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SC order went up in smoke as smog blankets Delhi

Supreme Court ordered bursting of only ‘green’ fire-crackers on Diwali and that too between 8-10 PM only.  Delhites ignored the call and are paying the price. The overall AQI was recorded at 302 at 11 pm in Delhi, which fall in the very poor category. 

Image Source: ANI

A thick haze engulfed the national capital with the air quality deteriorating to the “very poor” category. The overall Air Quality Index (AQI) was recorded at 302 at 11 pm. The air quality started deteriorating rapidly from 7 pm. The AQI was 281 at 7 pm. It rose to 291 at 8 pm and further deteriorated to 294 at 9 pm and 296 at 10 pm, according to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

The Supreme Court had allowed bursting of firecrackers from 8 pm to 10 pm only on Diwali and other festivals. It had also allowed manufacture and sale of only “green crackers”, which have a low light and sound emission and less harmful chemicals. But, all vanished into smoke. Shops sold banned crackers. Some vendors gave an option of home delivery to dodge ban.  

Worst Air Quality of Year

After Diwali, due to our ‘over-smartness’ Delhi recorded the worst Air Quality of the year. The Delhi Air Quality Index is around 574 at present. Air Quality Index entered in ‘severe’ category at 2 AM after midnight on Thursday. 

An AQI between 0 and 50 is considered “good”, 51 and 100 satisfactory”, 101 and 200 “moderate”, 201 and 300 “poor”, 301 and 400 “very poor”, and 401 and 500 “severe”. Above 500 is “severe-plus emergency” category. 

Several areas showed a spike in the air pollution. Areas like Anand Vihar, ITO and Jahangirpuri recorded very high pollution levels. According to the CPCB data, the 24-hour rolling average of PM2.5 and PM10 were 164 and 294 micrograms per cubic metre respectively. 

Why Should Innocent Suffer?

A “very poor” AQI essentially means that people may suffer from respiratory illnesses on a prolonged exposure to such air. Just imagine what ‘severe’ AQI can do? It can seriously trouble healthy people and seriously affect people with ailments. In recent weeks, Delhi doctors have reported an increase in patients with respiratory problems. 

Since the atmosphere is shared by all, even law-abiding, eco-friendly people would also suffer the same fate as the culprits. Due to some care-less people, now everyone would suffer. As smog engulf the capital, visibility would decrease. This might cause accidents. People would feel nauseating condition as well as choking of their lungs. Old people and children would develop respiratory diseases. Just because of few, the innocents would have to suffer. 

Everyone is aware of the consequences of the pollution. Everyone knows that it invites diseases. And everyone thinks that their piece of pollution won’t matter. But, what they don’t know is – it matters. 

What do you think?

Written by Sugat Srivastava

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