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Posted at: Nov 4, 2019, 7:08 AM; last updated: Nov 4, 2019, 9:18 AM (IST)

No blame game, let’s sit together to resolve pollution crisis: Kejri

‘Stubble burning is the reason’

  • What happened in these past 20 days that has caused the pollution to shoot up like this? It is not as if Delhiites have bought a crore of cars, or that 10 lakh industries have been set up. It is stubble burning that has made the air so polluted. — Arvind Kejriwal, Delhi Chief Minister

New Delhi, November 3

As air pollution touched toxic levels, with a thick blanket of smog enveloping the national capital, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that he has no intention of indulging in blame game or politics over the crisis, and the Centre and state governments should sit down together to resolve the issue.

With social media raging over the thick smog, the Aam Aadmi Party leader posted a short video on Twitter on Sunday in which he blamed stubble burning in the neighbouring states for the high level of air pollution in Delhi. Kejriwal said the pollution levels had risen only in the past 20 days due to stubble burning.

Showing pictures of a clear Delhi sky, he said from February this year to October 10, the pollution levels in Delhi were fine, the air quality was good and the stars were visible in the night sky.

“What happened in these past 20 days that has caused the pollution to shoot up like this? It is not as if Delhiites have bought a crore of cars, or that 10 lakh industries have been set up. It is stubble burning that has made the air so polluted,” Kejriwal said in the 8.39 minute video. He said the high pollution levels in the past few years were brought down due to collective efforts, such as banning diesel generators and making trucks use the peripheral roads instead of going through Delhi.

He said thanks to “24x7” electricity and the banning of diesel generators, which numbered six lakh, the air has become clearer. His government has also planted more trees in a 600 acre area, increased the forest cover, while the Central government has moved to force trucks to use the peripheral roads at night instead of belching their smoke in the capital.

Kejriwal said that in Punjab and Haryana, there were 27 lakh farmers, and in the past few years, 65,000 machines have been distributed to tackle the stubble. “How many years will it take for the machines to reach 27 lakh farmers? We cannot afford to sit quietly till then,” he said. — IANS

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