With the lethal air quality in Delhi-NCR post Diwali – with levels of PM 2.5 ranging from 800-1700 microgram per metre cube – the city is concerned about the air it is breathing yet again.
And while the Diwali crackers have done their bit, the peak stubble burning that is delayed this year because of monsoons that stayed longer, is yet to come. And scientists fear that this might worsen the air quality further.
Given these developments, the Delhi environment minister, Gopal Rai has asked for an emergency meeting to be held by the Centre for states.
"There was also the effect of cracker bursting on Diwali but it's waning now. The effect of 'parali' burning, however, continues to worsen air quality in Delhi," Rai said in a press conference NDTV.
"I'm sending a letter to Union Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav to call an emergency meeting to stop stubble burning. Environment Ministers of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan should be called to discuss the solutions."Gopla Rai, Environment minister, Delhi Government
In the press conference on Sunday, Rai also said that "Delhi has been breathing suffocating breath for the last three days and the entire city is worried about it."
He also said that after analysing these pollution levels with DPCC scientists the data are evidently showing that increase in the levels of pollution in the city has been directly proportional to the incidents of stubble burning around the city.
"If stubble burning does not go down, Delhi will have to suffocate again."Gopla Rai, Environment minister, Delhi Government
The Diwali crackers and the stubble burning, combined with the La Nina that is expected to make its appearance second year in a row, is all set to make the winters chillier and air pollution higher across the Indo-gangetic plain, including Delhi-NCR.