New Delhi: Continuing the battle against air pollution, Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai on Thursday issued directions for imposing a fine of Rs 20 lakh on the Delhi government’s Public Works Department (PWD) for violating dust control guidelines during the construction of a drain near Burari police station. Also Read - US Presidential Debate: "Look at China, Russia, India... Air is Filthy", Trump Justifies Stand on Climate Change

“Despite strict directions from the Delhi government, the agency has been blatantly flouting dust control norms. I have issued directions to impose a fine of Rs 20 lakh on PWD,” he said. Also Read - Air Quality Deteriorates Further in Delhi, Hits 'Very Poor' Category

The minister directed the PWD to take steps to prevent dust from blowing out, such as installing wind barriers, covering mounds of dust with nets and water sprinkling.

“I will again send an inspection (team) there. We will again impose a fine of Rs 20 lakh if proper measures are not taken,” he said.

A layer of haze hung over Delhi and its neighbouring areas on Thursday and the air quality slipped to “very poor” levels. Delhi recorded an air quality index (AQI) of 315 at 11:10 am. The last time the air quality hit such a poor level was in February.

Rai said the Delhi government has been making all efforts to bring pollution levels down.

(With PTI inputs)