Thick hazy morning in Delhi chokes, air quality deteriorates

An Indian worker makes fire-crackers for the upcoming Hindu festival Diwali at a factory on the outskirts of Ahmadabad India

An Indian worker makes fire-crackers for the upcoming Hindu festival Diwali at a factory on the outskirts of Ahmadabad India

The overall air quality index was recorded at 381, according to data from the Central Pollution Control Board.

On Thursday, Delhi recorded an AQI at 331.

The PM2.5 (presence of particles in the air with a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometres) was recorded at 179.

The Central Pollution Control Board recorded the overall air quality index of Delhi at 341.

The task force suggested discontinuing all construction activities between November 1 and November 10, involving excavation, stone crushers, and stone crushers that generate dust pollution.

Among the most polluted regions in Delhi were Dwarka, Anand Vihar, Rohini, Mundaka, Bawana, Mathura Raod, Delhi Technical University, Jahangirpuri, Narela, Nehru Nagar, Delhi University North Campus, Punjabi Bagh, R.K. Puram, Sonia Vihar, Vivek Vihar and Wazirpur.

A Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution Authority warned on Thursday that air pollution in the capital region is likely to peak from November 1 as toxic fumes from the burning of agricultural fields in the neighboring northern states of Haryana and Punjab could blow in because of a change in wind direction. While both are considered major atmospheric pollutants, PM2.5, in particular, poses greater harm as its fine particles can easily be inhaled into the respiratory tract.

Stubble-burning in Delhi's neighbouring Punjab and Haryana is now contributing to 20-30 per cent of the Capital's overall air-pollution, at a time when winds over Delhi are calm, officials said.

"We are reviewing the air-quality status on a daily basis and weather conditions in November are not going to be similar to what we have present", CPCB head said, adding the department would appreciate if people use "Sameer", a mobile app to report environment violations such as garbage dumping and open burning. "The weather conditions include wind direction, temperature etc".

Meanwhile, an inspection team led by Delhi Environment minister Imran Hussain Friday found "serious violations" in norms for dust control at the Pragati Maidan redevelopment site, following which the minister directed pollution control authorities to take strict action, the city government said. It also advised people to wear masks as a precaution.

The most recent air pollution data from the World Health Organisation released in March this year gave India the dubious distinction of having the world's ten most polluted cities.

SAFAR's public health advisory asked people with heart or lung disease, older adults and children to avoid prolonged or heavy exertion.

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