“Will Impact Future Generations”: Court Raps Delhi, 4 States On Air Quality

New Delhi:

Expressing concern over the deteriorating air quality, the Supreme Court has asked Delhi and 4 neighbouring states to submit a report on steps they have taken to curb pollution.

Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan have been given a week to provide a detailed account of the measures implemented to combat air pollution.

A three-judge bench headed by Justice SK Kaul and comprising Justices Sudhanshu Dhulia and P K Mishra will now hear the matter on November 7.

The court said that air pollution is a serious issue as it will have a huge impact on future generations. The court also noted that the poor air quality has now made it difficult to step out of the house in Delhi. Winters used to be the season in Delhi a few decades ago, the bench said.

The court said crop burning is one of the main reasons for air pollution in Delhi. Punjab has recorded a sudden surge in stubble burning after a relatively smoke-less October, data by the NASA showed. The state saw a 740 per cent increase on Sunday with 1,068 farm fire incidents – the highest in a single day in the current harvesting season.

The Supreme Court has directed the Central Air Quality Management (CAQM) to submit a report on when the problem started and the current ground situation, including parameters like the Air Quality Index (AQI) and the number of incidents of farm fires.

Air quality in some parts of the national capital dropped to the ‘severe’ category and is expected to remain ‘very poor’ for a few more days.

Delhi’s air quality in October 2023 has been worse compared to the last two years and meteorologists attribute it to the lack of rainfall. The Aam Aadmi Party government launched a 15-point action plan last month to mitigate air pollution during the winter season, with a strong emphasis on addressing dust pollution, vehicular emissions and open burning of garbage.

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