New Delhi suf­fers toxic smog han­gover

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS -

NEW DELHI: Air pol­lu­tion in New Delhi hit haz­ardous lev­els yes­ter­day after a night of free-for-all Deep­avali fire­works, de­spite Supreme Court ef­forts to curb the smog­fu­elling par­ty­ing.

Ma­jor mon­u­ments in­clud­ing the In­dia Gate and Red Fort were hid­den by haze.

Com­muters donned masks as vis­i­bil­ity on ma­jor roads was re­duced to barely 50m.

Am­bi­ent air qual­ity in what the World Health Or­gan­i­sa­tion has said is the world’s most pol­luted ma­jor city touched 595 yes­ter­day morn­ing, ac­cord­ing to the US em­bassy in Delhi which in­de­pen­dently mon­i­tors pol­lu­tion lev­els.

Any read­ing over 300 is con­sid­ered haz­ardous and a dan­ger even to healthy peo­ple.

The Supreme Court ruled last month that only en­vi­ron­men­tally friendly fire­works – that emit less smoke and soot – can be sold in Delhi, in a bid to cut the smog that has scarred the city’s in­ter­na­tional rep­u­ta­tion.

The court also said fire­crack­ers could only be set off be­tween 8pm and 10pm.

But the cap­i­tal’s 20 mil­lion res­i­dents turned a deaf ear to the rul­ing.

Crack­ers and rock­ets re­ver­ber­ated around the city well after mid­night.

“For a few mo­ments of en­joy­ment peo­ple are will­ing to en­dan­ger the planet. It is in­sane,” Pranav Ya­dav, a 19-year-old student wear­ing a pol­lu­tion mask, told AFP.

“I ex­pected peo­ple to show some con­cern but at this rate it won’t be long till ev­ery child in Delhi has a res­pi­ra­tory dis­ease,” added Ya­dav as he headed for a metro train.

Delhi po­lice had vowed to pun­ish vi­o­laters of the Supreme Court or­der but could not im­me­di­ately say whether charges had been made.

“Lo­cal po­lice sta­tions have reg­is­tered sev­eral com­plaints, we are try­ing to col­lect all the in­for­ma­tion,” Delhi po­lice spokesman Anil Mit­tal said. – AFP

A man cy­cles near Pres­i­dent’s House amid heavy smog in New Delhi yes­ter­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.