New Delhi, Nov 17: Delhi is yet to get relief from the smog blanket even as other parts of North India have got partial relief following rains. The national capital woke up to another smoggy morning on Friday with visibility remaining low. Rail traffic was massively affected with 40 trains to and from Delhi getting delayed. Besides this, 13 trains were rescheduled and six were cancelled today.
Meanwhile, pollution levels in Delhi remained above the danger mark, indicating hazardous levels of particulate matter in the air. According to the latest Air Quality Index data, Delhi’s Mandir Marg saw PM 2.5 at 333, Dwarka at 332, both falling under the ‘Hazardous’ category. PM 2.5 at Siri Fort was at 288 while Punjabi Bagh at 290, both ‘Very Unhealthy’.
However, restrictions imposed in the national capital over rising pollution levels were removed on Wednesday. The Environment Pollution Control Authority issued a direction withdrawing orders that were put in place in view of severe air pollution in Delhi. The EPCA issued a direction on removing ban on the entry of trucks in the national capital. The ban on construction works was also removed while the four-time hike in parking fees was withdrawn as well.
The Delhi High Court on Thursday asked the Centre and the Delhi Government’s senior bureaucrats to take up long-term measures like cloud seeding instead of immediate measures such as spraying of water. The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has also directed all schools and colleges in Delhi to install rainwater harvesting systems within two months and fine of Rs 5 lakh to be imposed if they fail to do so.