New Delhi [India]: The air quality in the national capital reached the ‘hazardous’ level a day after the auspicious occasion of Diwali, as Delhi woke up to a thick blanket of smog leading to low visibility.
The overall Air Quality Index (AQI) of Delhi at 8:30 am was recorded at 458, which falls under the ‘severe’ category, said System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR).
Areas affected the most include Anand Vihar (AQI: 999), Lodhi Road (AQI: 500), Chanakyapuri (AQI 459) and the area around Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium (AQI: 999), all under the ‘Hazardous’ category. Furthermore, visibility was severely hampered near the Akshardham Temple and Raisana Hill area.
An AQI between 0-50 is considered good, 51-100 is satisfactory, 101-200 moderate, 201-300 poor, 301-400 very poor and 401-500 is marked as severe/hazardous.
In the wake of the smog, commuters said they found it difficult to move out for work in the morning.
“The air quality has been hit badly. Also, there is a lot of smog making it difficult to commute,” a local told ANI.
In the run-up to Diwali, the Supreme Court had issued an order stating that only green crackers would be sold in New Delhi and the national capital region (NCR). It had also said that pollution-causing firecrackers, which have already been manufactured, will not be allowed to be sold in the NCR.
Despite the Supreme Court’s order on the usage of green crackers only, reports suggest that regular firecrackers were burnt, causing the air quality to plunge in most parts of Delhi-NCR.