37 Flights Diverted, Noida Schools Shut As Smog Chokes Delhi: 10 Points
Here is your 10-point guide to the story:
- A tweet from Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal read: "Pollution has reached unbearable levels across North India. Delhi government taken many steps. Delhiites have made many sacrifices. Delhi suffering for no fault of theirs. Punjab CM also expressed concern. Centre should take immediate steps to provide relief. We will support Centre in all initiatives".
- Thirty-seven flights were diverted from the Delhi airport due to low visibility caused by the pollution, a statement from the Delhi airport said. Of these, 12 were Air India flights.
- On Monday, the Supreme Court is expected to take up a report from the Environment Pollution Control Authority or EPCA, on Delhi air quality and the pollution caused by stubble-burning in the neighbouring states.
- The pollution control body has asked the court to issue directions to NCR states to take steps to stop burning of waste, toxic emissions from industries and dust from construction sites.
- There was no word from Punjab or Haryana, where stubble burning by farmers triggers a crisis in Delhi and adjoining areas every winter. The Chief Ministers of both states have asked the Centre to lead the way.
- Mr Kejriwal has also asked Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar to hold a meeting of Chief Ministers of the affected states. But there has been no response from the Centre yet.
- "We tried everything we could and people came together. Inspite of it, why should we take this?" Mr Kejriwal said in a video address this afternoon. "All governments come together and sit and talk about it. Punjab and Haryana has 27 lakh farmers.How do we reach all of them? How many more years do we have to take it? These issues need to be discussed," he added.
- Delhi is starting the odd-even road rationing scheme from tomorrow, which will run till November 15. Under it, vehicles with odd and even-numbered registration plates will run on odd and even days of the week. Schools and colleges are shut till Tuesday.
- Pollution in the National Capital Region was declared a public health emergency on Friday by the Environment Pollution (Prevention & Control) Authority after pollution levels entered into the "emergency" category for the first time since January.
- On Saturday, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia accused Union Minister Prakash Javadekar of postponing meetings with state environment ministers thrice -- on September 12, October 17 and on October 19 -- saying either he has no time for the pollution in the national capital.
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