New Delhi: ‘Delhi is suffering badly, the Air Quality Index (AQI) is almost 600 even today. How do people breathe?’ the Supreme Court asked the Arvind Kejriwal-led government on Friday as the national capital and its adjoining areas continued to struggle for clean air.
Besides, the court also pulled up the Centre over the matter and asked it to prepare a road map for installation of air purifying towers across Delhi to deal with pollution crisis.
A bench led by CJI Ranjan Gogoi also reprimanded the Kejriwal-led government over its claim that the Odd-Even has helped in tackling pollution. The top court stated that the rationing scheme was ‘half-baked’ and despite its implementation, pollution levels increased.
However, Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, who represented the Delhi government said that the pollution level was reduced by 5-15 per cent due to Odd-even scheme and that the result will be better if no exemption is given under the scheme. “The real culprit of Delhi pollution is stubble burning. Last year no study was done on impact of Odd-Even”, Rohatgi claimed.
Contrary to Delhi government, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), in its filing snubbed the Odd-even scheme stating that that car rationing has “hardly helped”.
Earlier in the day, while addressing a press conference, CM Kejriwal had said that his government does not want people to undergo unnecessary inconvenience hence, a final call on extending the odd even scheme will be taken on November 18 as Air quality is predicted to improve over the next two-three days.