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National Green Tribunal slams Centre, Delhi govt over rising air pollution; summons environment secretaries of four states

The development came as Delhi's air quality deteriorated to alarming levels and witnessed its worst smog situation in 17 years on Wednesday and Thursday.


National Green Tribunal slams Centre, Delhi govt over rising air pollution; summons environment secretaries of four states

New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Friday slammed Centre and the Delhi government for not taking adequate steps to tackle alarming air pollution level in the national capital.

The development came as Delhi's air quality deteriorated to alarming levels and witnessed its worst smog situation in 17 years on Wednesday and Thursday.

As per official data, the levels of PM2.5 (particulate matters with diameter less than 2.5 mm) have increased by 62.7 per cent on Wednesday, two days after Diwali.

Also Read: Air pollution and your health - Five reasons why you need an air purifier!

Coming down heavily on the Centre and Delhi government for not taking steps to tackle the alarming air pollution level, the green tribunal also asked them not to shift the blame on each other.

"It is unfair to the people of Delhi. In everything, the authorities are just throwing off their hands. We have to do something. You cannot say that time will do it," a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Swatanter Kumar said.

"Regarding health (of the people), nobody is bothered. On air pollution, nobody's bothered. The authorities are shifting the blame on each other. It is very bad," the bench remarked.

NGT tribunal asked the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) to take immediate steps to control pollution.

In its response to the green tribunal, the Delhi government said that high air pollution is due to crop burning in neighbouring states - Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan.

In wake of excessive pollution, NGT asked the Delhi govt to stop 10-year-old diesel vehicles from plying on roads in the national capital.

The green body on Friday summoned the Environment Secretary of the four states (Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and Rajasthan) over pollution increase in the region and asked them to submit a report on burning of agricultural residues and pollution control to the tribunal by November 8.

(With Agencies input)

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