New Delhi: As emergency measures are enforced from Thursday to keep pollution in check in the Delhi-NCR region, the state pollution control bodies have been directed to initiate criminal prosecution against violators, said reports. According to the Air Quality Index (AQI) data, major pollutant PM 10 was detected at 283 (poor category) and PM 2.5 was at 214 (poor category) in the Lodhi Road area in the morning. Worse comes to worst, the Delhi government said it was prepared to implement the odd-even scheme to regulate private vehicles. Delhi’s air quality has been recording alarming trends in the past two weeks. The pollution level dipped to severe on Tuesday, prompting authorities to intensify measures to reduce pollution. (Also read: Pvt Vehicles May be Stopped From Plying) Also Read - 'Public-Private Sectors Must Come Together to Combat Coronavirus,' Says Health Minister Harsh Vardhan
From Thursday, many steps would be taken to check pollution in the region. According to the Central Pollution Control Board, residents have been advised not to step out for jogs or run in the first ten days of November as toxic fumes from the stubble-burning regions of Punjab and Haryana could be present because of a change in wind direction. In Delhi, all construction work would be stopped from today. This includes all work involving excavation and civil construction in Delhi and the NCR region and would be applicable till Nov 10. All stone crushers and hot mix plants generating dust would be shut during this period. Also Read - Demand for N95 Masks, Sanitisers Shoots Up Amid Coronavirus Scare in Delhi-NCR
The Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) has exhorted Delhiites to use public transport from Thursday, till Nov 10 when the air quality of the national capital is likely to deteriorate. The reason behind the plea being that 40 per cent pollution comes from private vehicles in Delhi-NCR. Also Read - 14 of the World's 20 Most Polluted Cities Are in India, Delhi Most Polluted Capital: Report
Meanwhile, Delhi Metro has pressed into service 21 additional trains in view of air pollution. These would, together, provide 812 additional trips per day, a Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) spokesperson said. The East Delhi Municipal Corporation has also started imposing heavy penalties on the violators of NGT rules or those responsible for adding to pollution by violating Construction and Demolition rules. On Wednesday, EDMC issued 635 challans in Shahadra (South) zone. Similarly, 747 challans were issued in Shahadra (North) zone.