NEW DELHI: The AAP today targeted the Centre for keeping "mum" over the alarming levels of air pollution in the national capital and said the Delhi government was ready to work with neighbouring states to combat the problem.
Hitting out at Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan, who was away to attend the UN Climate Summit in Germany, AAP's Delhi unit convenor Gopal Rai said the minister is "missing" in the hours of crisis.
"Why is the Centre mum over this problem? The BJP and Congress are projecting the crisis in a way that the Delhi government is doing nothing. We appeal to both these parties that Delhi government wants to work keeping all its political differences aside," Rai said.
He said that despite appealing to work together to tackle the crisis, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has not received any positive response from his counterparts in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Haryana.
He said the air-quality dip is not restricted to Delhi alone, but cities like Lucknow, in neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, and Punjab and Haryana, and even Lahore in the Punjab province of Pakistan are facing the problem.
Rai was referring to a request Kejriwal made to Manohar Lal Khattar and Amarinder Singh, the chief ministers of Haryana and Punjab respectively, to work on a solution.
"My office continuously trying to take time from the CMs of Punjab n Haryana for me to meet the two CMs. It's an emergency," Kejriwal tweeted yesterday.
Stubble-burning in Haryana and Punjab is one of the major reasons for the deteriorating air quality in and around the national capital.
Rai asserted that while the BJP and the Congress were busy "playing politics" over the issue, the AAP government in Delhi was trying to find a solution to the problem.
The AAP government today announced odd-even road rationing scheme to curb vehicular traffic.
"The Delhi government is proactive and is seeking solutions. Despite appealing to the three chief ministers, no one is ready for a joint solution," Rai said.
On their part, the Congress can ask the Punjab chief minister while the BJP can direct the chief ministers of Uttar Pradesh and Haryana to work together on this matter, he added.
He also assured the environment experts that whatever solution they suggest will be seriously looked into.