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CPCB task force asks agencies in NCR to intensify enforcement to curb 'severe' air quality

By PTI
|

New Delhi, Dec 06: As the hazardous haze returned to the National Capital Region again, a CPCB-led task force on Thursday asked all agencies in Delhi-NCR to remain on high alert and to take stringent measures to control air pollution.

Representational image

It asked them to intensify enforcement activities in hot spots and industrial areas and recommended people to minimise the use of private vehicles. The overall air quality index (AQI) in the national capital read 382 at 4 pm, while the AQI entered the severe zone in Ghaziabad (432), Greater Noida (417) and Noida (414) on Thursday.

At a meeting of the task force, V K Soni, a senior scientist at the India Meteorological Department (IMD), said the region is likely to witness slow wind speed in the next five days. The wind direction is expected to shift from North to North-East Friday onwards which may increase pollution further, he said.

The AQI is likely drop to the lower end of severe category by Friday. Rains and thunderstorms on December 11 may bring some relief, Soni said. During a review meeting with the implementing agencies on Tuesday, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) said December and January have seen a number of days in the "very severe" category in the last three years.

"Similar situation may emerge this year as well, unless timely and adequate field-level preventive action is taken by implementing agencies," it said.

N K Gupta, Additional Director, CPCB, pointed out that a large number of incidents of construction and demolition activities and open dumping of garbage were being reported from some parts of Delhi and neighbouring towns such as Ghaziabad and Faridabad.

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"Therefore, municipal corporations in these areas are required to pay greater attention to such polluting activities and take all necessary measures to check air pollution on account of such activities," he said.

It was also pointed out that for want of timely reporting by implementing agencies, it has not been possible to make correct assessment of their performance.

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