The Centre’s pollution control panel on Friday deferred implementation of stricter measures under the final stage of the air pollution control plan or Stage 4 of the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP 4) in Delhi-NCR, asserting that it will monitor the situation for a day or more.
“The curbs under Stage 3 of pollution control plan implemented only a day ago; allow time for full impact on AQI in Delhi-NCR,” news agency PTI quoted the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) as saying.
Delhi’s 24-hour average air quality index stood at 468 on Friday which falls in the “severe plus” category, a stage at which all emergency measures, including a ban on polluting trucks, commercial four-wheelers, and all types of construction, are mandated to be initiated and enforced in the National Capital Region.
These measures constitute the final stage of the GRAP and should ideally be activated at least three days prior to the Air Quality Index surpassing the 450-mark in the capital, as outlined in a policy document prepared by CAQM.
However, during a review meeting, the CAQM decided to monitor the air pollution situation for a day or more before implementing stricter curbs in Delhi-NCR.
“Delhi’s average AQI is already showing a declining trend since afternoon. At 12 noon, the average AQI clocked 475 which improved to 468 at 4pm and further to 456 at 5pm,” it said.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.