Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai on Tuesday said that this year the pollution level in the national capital was the lowest after Diwali compared to the last five years.
Sharing the figures of the last five years, the minister said that this year, there has been a reduction of 30 per cent in pollution compared to last year itself. "Thirty per cent lesser firecrackers were burst in Delhi this Diwali, people are becoming aware", said the environment minister.
Rai also flagged off mobile smog guns from the Delhi Secretariat. "Today we are starting 150 mobile smog guns. Last year we started 10 such smog guns. Out of these 150 mobile smog guns, two smog guns will be installed in all 70 Assembly constituencies of Delhi and the rest will be installed at pollution hot spots. A mobile smog gun will hold 7000 liters of water and will cover an area of ten km on one side," the environment minister said.
"The festival of Diwali was celebrated with great pomp yesterday, but I want to congratulate the people of Delhi that due to their efforts, the level of pollution has not increased today compared to every year. Today is the lowest level of pollution in the last five years. Last year it was 462, but today it has come down to 323, that is, there is a shortfall of about thirty per cent", Rai said.
On the incidents of burning of firecrackers in the capital city, Gopal Rai said that "Some people had burnt crackers. However, it is expected that gradually awareness will increase in them too. Since the AQI in Delhi is still 323 and it is increasing as the winter season approaches. Our efforts are continuing to bring down the pollution levels".
On the question of stubble burning in Punjab, he said, "The state controlled the farm fires without the Centre's help. Last year, on the day of Diwali, there were 3,032 incidents of stubble burning in Punjab, 228 in Haryana and 123 in Uttar Pradesh. This year only 1,019 incidents of stubble burning have been registered on the day of Diwali, while this figure has increased in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh."