On Diwali, air quality index hits ‘very poor’ in Delhi; Mumbai at ‘moderate’ level

As Diwali was celebrated across the country Monday, the air quality index (AQI) in the National Capital Region (NCR) plummeted to ‘very poor’, while other major cities recorded ‘moderate’ or ‘satisfactory’ air quality.

Delhis air quality hit the “very poor” category with an AQI of 312. This is the first ‘very poor’ air day of the season for the national capital.

Gurgaon and Noida also recorded air quality in the ‘very poor’ category, with respective AQIs of 322 and 305.

An AQI between 301 and 400 is considered to be “very poor” and can cause respiratory illness on prolonged exposure, according to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

The System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), meanwhile, termed the air quality across Mumbai and Pune as ‘moderate’ and ‘satisfactory’, respectively. The CPCB recorded an AQI value of 136 yesterday, with the major pollutants being PM10 and PM2.5 in Mumbai.

According to the CPCB, Bengaluru recorded an AQI index value of 100 with a ‘satisfactory’ air quality. A ‘moderate’ AQI value of 192 was recorded in Chennai. In lines with a Supreme Court order, the Tamil Nadu government had specified that crackers should only be burst from 6 am to 7 am and 7 pm to 8 pm.

The CPCB termed the air quality of the city of Kolkata as ‘satisfactory’ with an AQI value of 55. The major pollutants were identified as PM10 and NO2. Recently, the West Bengal Environment Minister Manas Bhuniya had said the new central control room at Paribesh Bhavan is monitoring sound and air pollution in real time on Diwali and Kali Puja.

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