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Delhi Air Quality: On Diwali morning, Delhi’s air quality inches closer to ‘very poor’ levels

New Delhi: The air of Delhi has become badly polluted on the day of Diwali. The air quality in the national capital inched very close to the very poor category on Diwali morning. Delhi's AQI had reached 298 by 6 am on Monday.

By Priyanka Verma 
Updated Date

New Delhi: The air of Delhi has become badly polluted on the day of Diwali. The air quality in the national capital inched very close to the very poor category on Diwali morning. Since the night, the temperature dropped in many areas of Delhi and the winds also blew. The level of pollution had increased during the night. People also burst firecrackers in many areas of the capital. Smoke was seen rising in about 1,318 fields. Earlier on Sunday, the Air Quality Index (AQI) in Delhi had reached 259. Delhi’s AQI had reached 298 by 6 am on Monday.

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Out of 90 monitoring stations in the city, 35 stations in Delhi recorded very poor air quality. At the same time, the air quality in Anand Vihar was recorded in the severe category. The Air Quality Index was recorded in Ghaziabad at 300, Noida 299, Greater Noida 282, Gurugram 249 and Faridabad at 248.

If the air quality index is between zero to 50, then it is considered good. An air quality index between 51 and 100 is considered satisfactory, an air quality index between 101 and 200 is considered poor, an air quality index between 201 and 300 is considered poor, and an air quality index between 301 and 400 is considered severe.

SAFAR, a forecasting agency under the Union ministry, had earlier expressed hope that the pollution level in Delhi could increase significantly due to the fall in temperature. It was feared that the air quality index had reached the very poor category on Monday morning. It was also said that even if firecrackers are not lit, the air of Delhi will remain in the very poor category.

If firecrackers are burst in Delhi on the occasion of Diwali like last year, then the pollution level here will reach the severe category. By the next day of Diwali, Delhi will reach the Red Zone due to pollution.Diwali is being celebrated across the country on Monday.The contribution of stubble burning to Delhi’s PM 2.5 pollution has so far remained low (up to 5 per cent) due to a slow transport-level wind speed. But, it is likely to increase to 8 per cent on Monday.

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Gufran Beig, founder project director, SAFAR, said the transport-level wind direction and speed is likely to become “very favourable” for transport of smoke from stubble burning from Monday afternoon. “It will increase the share of stubble burning in Delhi’s PM 2.5 pollution to 15-18 per cent on October 25 and push the air quality into the ‘severe’ category,” he said. The Indian Agricultural Research Institute reported 902 farm fires in Punjab, 217 in Haryana and 109 in Uttar Pradesh on Sunday evening.

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