After Diwali celebrations, a thick layer of smog covered Delhi and the surrounding areas, causing hazy skies and reduced visibility. Despite the Supreme Court’s ban on fireworks due to alarming pollution levels, many people in Delhi-NCR still burst crackers, especially in key areas, adding to the pollution.
The air quality, measured by the Air Quality Index (AQI), remains poor, with some areas like Anand Vihar reaching an extremely high AQI of 849. In parts of Delhi, the AQI even surpassed 900. The recent ban on firecrackers by the Delhi government and the consideration of ‘artificial rainfall’ to address pollution indicate the severity of the situation.
Despite rain showers providing some relief and reducing pollution by 50%, the overall air quality in Delhi remains poor. On Sunday, areas like Delhi University, IIT Delhi, IGI Airport T3, Dhirpur, and Lodhi Road reported poor air quality, with AQI ranging from 218 to 269.
Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai explained that the rain helped disperse pollutants, reducing pollution levels temporarily. However, it’s uncertain how long this improvement will last. The concentration of PM 2.5, a harmful air pollutant, exceeded the World Health Organization’s limit by 20 times. Over the past seven years, Delhi has consistently experienced higher air pollution levels during and after Diwali.