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Air pollution continues to be high

13 November 2017, 02:19 | Darnell Patrick

Air pollution continues to be high

Air quality in Delhi still ‘severe’ NGT pulls up AAP government for rising levels of pollution

Summary: The air quality has been categorised as "severe", when pollution level hits 401 or above, in the Air Quality Index (AQI).

Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has been monitoring the situation arising out of increase in air pollution level in Delhi NCR continuously.

But the smog spiked on Sunday bringing down visibility to less than 100 metres in the morning. Following a directive by Delhi's Environment Minister Imran Hussain, the Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited on Friday has been assigned to settle down particulate matter (PM) in the national capital region through aerial sprinkling in Delhi.

On Saturday, US-based United Airlines became the first airlines to temporarily suspend its service to Delhi citing poor air quality. AQI of neighbouring Faridabad, Ghaziabad, Noida and Gurgaon were also in the emergency category.

The NGT said that the move of the Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government to implement odd-even formula from November 13 to 17 may be stayed if the government failed to prove that the restrictions were effective a year ago. The city's Air Quality Index has been in the range of 700 to 1,000, making it hard for people in the state to even breathe.

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Footfalls at hospitals and clinics are on a rise with doctors suggesting patients with serious respiratory troubles to move out of the city. "Calm surface winds blowing from north-northwest may result in the build-up of pollution levels until Monday morning", the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology and the India Meteorological Department said in a statement on Sunday.

The officials are now hoping for a change in the weather pattern that could improve the situation.

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) would decide the fate of the odd-even scheme in the national capital on Saturday during a special hearing.

The Delhi government is likely to file an appeal before the NGT.



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