Delhi Cabinet approves Rs 36 crore expenditure for anti-pollution campaigns

The Cabinet has approved an expenditure of Rs 36 crore from the Budget of the Directorate of Information and Publicity towards the mass awareness campaigns, in the recent year.

As per the official statement, The “Delhi Cabinet” on Oct 19 approved an expenditure of Rs 36 crore for carrying out “mass awareness” campaigns against pollution in Delhi. While there has been a 25% reduction in pollution in Delhi, the winter months see a major spike in pollution levels, The statement pointed out.

Moreover, As per the recent statement, One of the major reasons behind this increase in pollution levels is the stubble burning that takes place in Delhi’s neighbouring states. One of the challenges faced by any government in such a situation is regarding compliance and “citizens participation” in emergency measures as they often intrude upon the regular lives of people.

Thus, “This is the reason why a massive public awareness campaign is necessary, not merely to inform the citizens about the specific modalities, but also to build the confidence of citizens to participate in such measures,” the statement remarked. As per the PTI, “The Cabinet has approved an expenditure of Rs 36 crore from the Budget of the Directorate of Information and Publicity towards the mass awareness campaigns,” It attributed.

However, As per the data record, The national capital’s air quality fluctuated between “poor” and “very poor” categories on Friday, and was expected to decline sharply over the weekend owing to changing weather and “significant” stubble burning. The overall air quality index (AQI) in the city stood at 306 at 9 am on Oct 18. It improved by 64 points and was recorded at 242 at 9 pm. The overall AQI at DTU, Dwarka Sector 8, Narela, Wazirpur and Bawana was 312, 316, 310, 312, and 341 respectively, which falls in the “very poor” category.

Despite the same, The period between October 15 and November 15 is considered critical as maximum number of stubble burning incidents take place in this span in Punjab and adjoining states and is one of the main reasons for alarming spike in pollution in Delhi-NCR. It is not that local pollution has increased, it is that weather has turned adverse and so, air pollution is again on the rise. While the Ministry of Earth Sciences air quality research and forecast service, SAFAR, stated that, “Under the influence of a western disturbance, surface wind speed has increased. Increased ventilation coefficient has lead to improvement in air quality.”

Consequently, Several measures being taken by the government to check the pollution levels in Delhi include implementation of the “odd-even” road rationing scheme from November 4 to 15 and distribution of free masks to city residents, among others. The government is committed to not just further reducing pollution in the months to come, but also to protect citizens from the health hazards posed by the sudden spike in air pollution, The statement remarked.

About Author, “Trilok Singh”, MA in Political Science, Kirori Mal College, University of Delhi. Currently, CEO at Youth Darpan MediaIASmind and India’s Journal. 

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