Delhi environment minister Gopal Rai on Friday wrote to Uttar Pradesh transport minister Dayashankar Singh urging him to take action on the plying of non-destined vehicles via the national capital from UP’s border. Rai said the non-destined vehicles were supposed to be diverted through the Eastern and Western Peripheral ways but were entering Dellhi to reach other destinations.
In his letter, Rai wrote, “During the visit of cabinet ministers of Govt. of NCT of Delhi on various Delhi Borders in the night of November 9, it was noticed that non destined vehicles, which were supposed to be diverted through the Eastern and Western Peripheral ways are entering through the border and plying via Delhi for their out of Delhi destinations, causing vehicular air pollution in Delhi.”
Rai also requested the UP minister to ensure that trucks carrying non-essential goods are diverted through peripheral expressways to avoid traffic jams at the capital’s borders.
“In this regard, it is requested that directions be issued to the concerned to ensure that all the non-destined vehicles should be diverted through Eastern and Western Peripheral Expressway right at their entry points before Delhi Border. Accordingly, additional enforcement teams may be deployed at all the Entry Points to Peripheral ways to ensure the implementation of the aforesaid directions,” he wrote.
Under the final stage of the Graded Response Action Plan, only CNG, electric, and BS VI-compliant vehicles from other states are allowed to enter Delhi, with exemptions granted to those involved in essential services.
On pollution levels, Rai said that the rain resulted in reducing pollution level by 50% but can’t determine for how long it would continue. “…After the rain, pollution dispersed and the wind was also blowing. It resulted in reducing pollution level by 50% from 450 (AQI) to 225 (AQI) in Delhi but it’s too early to say how long this rain will have an impact,” he said.
Delhi and its adjoining regions received intermittent showers on Friday bringing much respite to the citizens of the national capital region (NCR) from the toxic air that people had been battling with over the past few days as the air quality index (AQI) marginally improved in the region.
Delhi’s 24-hour average air quality index (AQI) was recorded at 213 (poor) at 7am on Saturday — an improvement from Delhi’s reading of 279 (poor) at 4pm on Friday.
(With inputs from agencies)