New Delhi: Two days ahead the odd-even scheme is supposed to end in Delhi, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that it can be extended if required as NCR region struggled to breathe on Wednesday. The Supreme Court, on the other hand, rued the fact that little has been done to combat the pollution situation seriously.
“It is sad that despite the Supreme Court’s directions that no stubble will be burnt, it is still continuing in Punjab. It can be converted to both CNG and coal. What are the governments of Haryana and Punjab not exploring those option? If farmers get money, employment, then why will they put stubble on fire,” the CM said.
Talking about the smog situation when German Chancellor visited India, the CM expressed concerns over the image of the capital. “Delhi is the capital of India. What is the image we are building? When the German Chancellor was here, what did she think of Delhi?” Kejriwal said.
The Supreme Court slammed the Centre over the issue of air pollution in the capital and other parts of north India. The court also asked the government to explore the possibilities of using hydrogen-based fuel technology.
“In our view, little constructive efforts have been made by the government and other stakeholders to find a solution to the problem,” outgoing CJI Ranjan Gogoi said.
The overall air quality index (AQI) in the city was 494 on Wednesday morning, according to the monitoring agency SAFAR. The index measures the levels of airborne PM 2.5 – particles that can reach deep into the lungs.
As the Supreme Court sought a report on odd-even from the Delhi government, the CM said the government will look into the matter and decide whether the scheme needs an extension as there was a break in between during Guru Nanak birth anniversary.