Centre needs to get serious on issue of air pollution, says Gopal Rai
Of the 30 top polluted cities in the world, 22 are from India and mostly from the National Capital Region (NCR), it said.
NEW DELHI: A day after the World Air Quality Report once again stated that Delhi is still the most polluted capital city in the world, environment minister Gopal Rai stated that Centre should work with Delhi for a better future.
Earlier, in a report released by a Swiss organization- ‘IQAir’ which is called the ‘World Air Quality Report, 2020’ stated that while there has been a 15 percent reduction in air pollution in Delhi it still remains the most polluted capital in the world. Of the 30 top polluted cities in the world, 22 are from India and mostly from the National Capital Region (NCR), it said.
The Aam Aadmi Party government which has been ruling Delhi for the last six years has made pollution as one of the main promises during the election campaign, in its manifesto also the party talked about taking measures to reduce pollution for a better future. “The Centre had allowed the lapse of the Commission for Air Quality Management, and until the Central Government gets serious about combating pollution, nothing could be done.
Only if governments begin to work now to address air pollution, can we aim for a better future” said the environment minister. Even on the matter of sir pollution AAP and Central government have locked horns in the past, mainly regarding efforts to control air pollution because of crop residue burning in states of Punjab and Haryana.
“Nine cities in the top 10 include cities from Uttar Pradesh. Delhi used to be polluted, but the condition is slowly improving, with reports stating that pollution has seen a fall of 15%. The reason for this reduction is the consistent and diligent efforts of the Arvind Kejriwal government” added Rai.
BJP blames AAP for ‘Most Polluted’ Tag
The BJP launched an attack on the Delhi government a day after the city was declared as the most polluted capital city in the world. Delhi BJP spokespersons Harish Khurana and Praveen Shankar Kapoor, in a press conference, alleged that the Kejriwal government failed to utilise its environment budget.
Citing documents, they claimed that during financial years 2019-20 and 2020-21, the AAP government “failed” to utilise the budget allocated for environment. In the 2020-21 alone, over 60 per cent of the environment budget is about to lapse, they said. The AAP government should immediately form an expert committee to study various reasons of pollution and suggest ways to curb it, the BJP leaders demanded.