(Image source from: www.indiatoday.in)
The levels of pollution in Delhi soared through a record when it hit the highest in the three years. Majority of the distraught citizens across the state took to their social media to vent their frustration and the kind of threat that they are experiencing for this harmful air around.
According to one of the reports by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), the air quality index (AQI) of Delhi on Sunday was 494 at 04:00 pm which is the highest it’s been since November 06, 2016 when it hit the 497 mark.
21 of the air quality monitoring stations recorded the situation of the AQI around 490 to 500 during the said time with their air quality sensors installed around Aya Nagar, Ashok Vihar, Anand Vihar and Aurobindo Marg peaking.
The Ministry of Earth Sciences’ air quality monitor, SAFAR also found that the AQI of the state reached to a soaring 708 at around 5 pm which is 14 times more than what the safe level should be for breathing in.
Several of the proposed weather models have found that the condition of the worsening pollution in Delhi can end up affecting the southern province of India as well. According to the chemical-pollutants dispersal model called SILAM which has been developed by Finnish Meteorological Institutes indicated saying that the blanket of dust covering the capital city of India could travel down to the east India and pass through the Bay of Bengal and enter the south India through Tamil Nadu.
V.K. Soni, scientist at the India Meteorological Department suggested saying, “That is quite unlikely. The chemical-transport model we’re testing shows a rapid dispersal that will make its presence felt as early as Sunday night. It’s unlikely for this current pattern of wind to transport pollutants so far.”
With the persistent decline in the quality of air in Delhi, Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba has decided to closely monitor the levels in Delhi and the NCR region. The same was decided in a high level meeting with the Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister P.K. Mishra.
Mishra reviewed the condition in their hand by conducting a serious video call with the senior officials present in some of the states of Punjab, Haryana and Delhi. The thick layer of dust and pollution also hindered the smooth functioning of the Indira Gandhi International Airport’s operations in Delhi. The lack of visibility across the air led to delay of 490 flights, 35 of them being cancelled and 32 of them being diverted to the nearest airport.
The delays of the flights also lasted somewhere around 2-7 hours, thus creating a chaotic scene around in the airports. The same was also the case in some of the other airports across the country where Delhi flights were scheduled to take off.
The sudden spikes in the pollution led to the shutting down of the schools in the Ghaziabad region till November 05, 2019. The situation happening around in Delhi is now a matter of public health emergency because of how bad the air has been polluted.
The same needs immediate mitigation ways to finally bring some changes along in the weather conditions in Delhi and find better ways to combat the ever growing issues with the polluted air that people are breathing in on a daily basis.
By Somapika Dutta