Amid the dipping state of air quality in India’s capital, stringent curbs have been introduced in Delhi. Trucks have been banned from entering Delhi, with effect from Sunday, November 5. As air quality entered the ‘severe plus’ category, the Delhi government announced closure of all primary schools till November 10.
“As pollution levels continue to remain high, primary schools in Delhi will stay closed till 10th November,” said Delhi Education Minister Atishi Marlena. For Grade 6-12, schools are being given the option of shifting to online classes, she added.
On Monday morning, the overall air quality in Delhi continued to remain in the ‘critical’ category, according to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR)-India. On Monday morning, the overall average AQI of 471 was recorded, as per SAFAR.
Pollution levels in Delhi have remained in the ‘critical’ category for the past few days recording AQI in the ‘400’ range at several locations in and around Delhi. The city’s air quality index (AQI) on Sunday was 471, putting it in the “hazardous” category, followed by Lahore in Pakistan at a “very unhealthy” of 261.
Due to the poor air condition, residents have been complaining of irritation in the eyes and itchy throats with the air turning a dense grey as the AQI hovered above 400 in some monitoring stations. An AQI of 0-50 is considered good while anything between 400-500 affects healthy people and is a danger to those with existing diseases.
As part of additional measures, the State Government also announced ‘work from home’ policy for 50% of government staff till the next orders. Meanwhile, the people of New Delhi were seen flocking to hill towns as the Indian capital was shrouded in smog on Saturday, November 04.