After relatively clean Sunday, air pollution rises sharply in Delhi

Traffic policemen wear face masks to protect themselves from Delhi's pollution.  Photograph:( Zee News Network )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Nov 05, 2018, 10.38 AM (IST)

After a relatively clean Sunday, air pollution in Delhi rose sharply on Monday with the AQI at least one spot being recorded at over 900. 

The air quality index at Anand Vihar was recorded at 912 at 10 am on Monday. (Anything above 300 falls in the "hazardous" category). 

Delhi AQI

(Delhi's AQI levels on Monday morning.)

The AQI at ITI Shahdra meanwhile was recorded at 879 and in South Delhi's Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium at 604. 

The dip in air quality had been foretold by Delhi officials. 

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The overall air quality index (AQI) on Sunday was recorded at 181, which falls in the "moderate" category. On Sunday morning it was 231, which falls in the "poor" category, Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) data had said.

The improvement in air quality can be attributed to the increase in surface wind speed to five kmph. This flushed out pollutants, an official of the Centre-run System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research (SAFAR) had said.

The reduction in base emission is also suggestive of a more pronounced effect of control measures taken by authorities, the official said. 

SAFAR also said there is a large possibility of an increase in moisture from Monday evening, which might lead to an increase in the pollution level.

Delhi authorities meanwhile have stepped up efforts to combat pollution which includes measures like halting construction activities and regulating traffic.

There is a halt on all construction activities involving excavation. Civil construction has also been suspended in Delhi and other NCR districts, besides closure of all stone crushers and hot mix plants generating dust pollution.

The Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) has also directed the Transport Department and the Traffic Police to intensify checking of polluting vehicles and control travel congestion in the region during November 1-10.

An aggressive 10-day-long 'Clean Air Campaign' from November 1 to 10 has also been launched to monitor and report polluting activities as well as to ensure quick action.

Based on 368 complaints, a total fine of Rs 83,55,000 was imposed on Sunday itself by 52 teams in the national capital, said the CPCB.

It said a total of 119 complaints of construction and demolition activities were received.

Other complaints included that of vehicular emission, traffic congestion, industrial emission, open or garbage burning, leaf burning, road dust, unpaved road, fire in landfill sites, air pollution from generators among others, the CPCB said.

It said a total of 52 complaints were received through social media and e-mail while 316 complaints through the 'Sameer app' that has been developed by the CPCB.

Officials said about 43 teams attended to 248 complaints in Delhi. Two teams attended to 11 complaints in Gurgaon, two teams to 31 complaints in Faridabad and two teams to five complaints in Noida and Greater Noida. Three teams attended 21 complaints in Ghaziabad.

On Friday and Saturday, a total penalty of Rs 80 lakh was imposed on violators. 

(With inputs from PTI)