CHANDIGARH: Punjab has failed to control stubble burning, while neighbouring Haryana has decreased the menace, said Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal here today. He added that the pollution had deteriorated in the national capital after October 25.
Showing satellite images of stubble burning in Punjab and Haryana, Kejriwal said, "We have seen an abnormal increase in pollution level after October 25. This is nothing else but due to stubble burning in various parts of Punjab be it Bathinda or Amritsar. The incidents of stubble burning were more in Punjab this year than in Haryana. In Haryana, this is limited to north Haryana in the areas around Ambala district which borders Punjab."
He said Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had earlier assured him of lesser stubble burning in Haryana this year and the satellite images showed that stubble burning was indeed less in that state this time. Hitting at the Congress Government in Punjab, Kejriwal said the government and pollution control authorities in the state need to take the menace of stubble burning more seriously to find a lasting solution to the annual problem that was causing severe air pollution in Delhi.
The number of vehicles have not increased in the national capital after October 25 and neither more industries have been set up and nor there has been a dust build up. The air quality has deteriorated due to stubble burning in Punjab. Before October 25 the pollution level was between 150 to 200 points and now it is more than 350 points," he said.
"A few months ago I met Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan to discuss this problem. He assured me that the problem will be curbed as 'Happy Seeder' machines will be provided to panchayats to get rid of the crop residue. However, nothing has happened," he alleged.
When asked about the infighting in the Punjab unit of the Aam Aadmi Party, he said this was an internal matter of the party and would be resolved soon.
"The outcome of the action against Sukhpal Singh Khaira would be known soon,'' he said. He also hit out at the Congress, INLD and BJP in Haryana as he said that in the last 52 years nothing has changed in the state as these parties indulge in caste politics and AAP talks about buildings and hospitals.
"People have tried successive governments of the Congress, Indian National Lok Dal and Bharatiya Janata Party. They have all failed to deliver on development. Schools, roads, hospitals and other infrastructure are in a bad shape. These parties have ruled Haryana for 52 years. But nothing has changed on the ground. We have brought revolutionary changes in Delhi in three years. It is being discussed at the global level. I have travelled in recent days to villages in Haryana. We have been to schools. They are in dilapidated condition," he said.
He urged the people of Haryana to vote for the AAP in Assembly elections.