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| Last Updated:01/02/2019

Latest News


Action plan to deal with the issue of stubble burning to be in place in next one month, says Centre

The Centre said it would be ready with an action plan to deal with the issue of stubble burning in next one month on Tuesday - a move which may provide farmers in the National Capital Region (NCR) a feasible alternative to dispose of their post-harvest Rabi (winter-sown) crops residue in March-April.




Absence of such a plan had seen farmers burning farm residues after harvesting their Kharif (summer-sown) crops in November that led to a number of 'very poor' and 'severe' air quality days in the capital.


A task force, headed by principal secretary to Prime Minister, has been working to formulate the action plan.


The issue along with other triggers of air pollution in the capital and neighbouring NCR cities was discussed in a review meeting, chaired by Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan and attended among others by the Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.


It was decided in the meeting that the dust from major construction sites will be monitored closely. "Strict measures will be taken for controlling dust pollution. All possible assistance will be provided to the municipal corporations by the central government for increasing the scope of mechanised sweeping," said the ministry while referring to outcome of the meeting.


Besides deciding to enforce all existing anti-pollution measures, including handling of solid municipal waste and ban on pet-coke and furnace oil, strictly in all NCR states, it was also decided to ask Delhi Police to tackle the issue of traffic congestion and parking in the capital.


"The Pollution Control Boards will work in a proactive manner to ensure that violators are dealt with strictly. A special 'Anti Pollution Drive' will be launched in January, 2018 for 15 days," said the ministry. The participating ministers also promised to take all steps to increase availability of public transport in the medium term.


The meeting noted that the air quality this year was better than the air quality in 2016. The ministry claimed that the number of 'good', 'moderate' and 'satisfactory' days in 2017 were 151, whereas the same were 109 days in 2016. Similarly, the number of 'very poor', 'poor' and 'severe' days this year are 181, as compared to 214 days in 2016.


Environment Minister of Uttar Pradesh Dara Singh Chauhan, his Haryana counterpart Vipul Goyal and senior officials of Punjab and Rajasthan also attended the meeting.