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Air pollution impact - Private cars face temporary ban in Delhi

October 31, 2018

The air quality in New Delhi is getting worse, causing several health issues. The government claims it has been working out ways to tackle the pollution problem, but so far air quality shows no signs of improvement.

As per the Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA), if the air quality does not improve in the next few days and becomes worse, a decision will be taken to keep private cars off the roads.

This means only public transport vehicles will be allowed to run. This step seems almost certain as air quality is expected to worsen in Delhi between 1 and 10 November.

The ban on cars will be a part of the action plan that EPCA is trying to implement to improve the quality of air in Delhi. The EPCA is a authority set up by the Supreme Court to work on reducing pollution or smog problem in the country.

The EPCA has also suggested a ban on some other pollution causing factors such as construction work, use of diesel-run power generators, brick making kilns and the burning of garbage.

The overall Air Quality Index - AQI is observed to deduce the air quality of a place. AQI between 0 and 50 is considered 'good' while that between 401 and 500 is 'severe' and unhealthy. Unfortunately, the AQI in New Delhi is now above 400 in many areas and is a major cause for concern.

Apart from pollution caused by the large number of vehicles, industrial pollution and heavy stubble burning in neighboring states of Punjab and Haryana has been found responsible for the high AQI.

People in Delhi have been advised to stay indoors and avoid going out if possible. The sale of masks for breathing has gone up as people are trying to get some protection from the bad air. Breathing-related problems have become common and people are taking to social media.

Sanjay Bragta‏ tweeted, "Delhi NCR is already a gas chamber. Can see it, smell it #pollution."

Another twitter user Ankur Dharmosht‏ said, "All private cars will be stopped in Delhi from Nov 1-Nov 10. Correct decision by EPCA.Hope Delhi pollution level doesn't detoriate or else all private vehicles will be stopped. So have happy n a pollution free Diwali to all #environment #pollution #AAP #DelhiAirPollution"

The Aam Aadmi Party government and The Centre have been blaming each other for the current state of affairs. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal tweeted,

Every year Delhi suffers because of the ineptness of the federal government and the state governments of neighbouring Punjab and Haryana states. - Arvind Kejriwal, Chief Minister, Delhi

A recent report from the World Health Organisation (WHO) has revealed that pollution in India is fatal for young children. The report claims that in 2016, more than one lakh children under five years of age died due to breathing in toxic air.

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