After Diwali, toxic air in Delhi

The air quality in the national capital deteriorated to the “severe” category a day after Diwali on Sunday.

The overall air pollution of Delhi shot up to about eight times the safe limit.

According to Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) data, the Air Quality Index (AQI) at ITO area and Anand Vihar recorded as 461 and 478 respectively.

Pollution levels in Delhi’s neighbouring areas also soared as people defied the ban on firecrackers.

Sale and burning of firecrackers have been totally banned in the National Capital Region from November 9 midnight to November 30 midnight over the huge pollution levels.

The cities of Faridabad (438), Ghaziabad (483), Greater Noida (439), Gurgaon (424) and Noida (466) recorded their AQI in the severe category.

Health experts observed that short term exposures to high levels of PM 2.5 can cause severe health problems including the coronavirus infections, blood pressure and asthma.

According to IMD regional forecasting centre, light rain is likely Sunday under the influence of a western disturbance and it is still unclear if it is enough to wash away pollutants.