Delhi’s air quality did not return to the “very poor” category after the start of the clean air campaign a fortnight ago, Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan today said, adding that such campaigns will be replicated in about 100 non-attainment cities in the country.
A non-attainment area is an area considered to have air quality worse than the National Ambient Air Quality Standards.
Addressing reporters on the concluding day of the campaign here, the minister said that out of 7,357 cases of violation, challans worth Rs 8.85 crore had been issued in 3,117 cases. The maximum number of challans was issued in the construction and demolition sector.
“This campaign will be replicated in about 100 non-attainment cities,” Harsh Vardhan said, emphasising that efforts will be made to develop the campaign into a movement.
He said the air quality in 2018 was better compared to 2016 and 2017. He said on February 10, when the campaign was launched, the air quality was “very poor”.
“(But) the air quality never went back to the very poor category after February 12,” he said.
The minister said that comparative data for the months of February and March in the years 2016, 2017 and 2018 will be collated to ensure that the campaign was moving in the right direction.
He said efforts were made during the campaign to raise public awareness via radio and other communication tools.
Outlining the two major objectives of the campaign, he said these included the implementation of existing measures to control polluting activities in Delhi and finding solutions through workshops.
He said the 70 teams, formed to assist in the campaign, have been asked to pen down their experiences and offer suggestions.
“We want to take the campaign from a modest beginning towards perfection in implementation and addressing various issues related to pollution,” he said.