Paddy straw burning in Punjab and Haryana has been identified as a major contributor to the alarming increase in air pollution in Delhi during October and November…reports Asian Lite News
The number of stubble burning incidents in Punjab has surpassed 30,000 within two months, with 2,544 new farm fires reported on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Delhi’s air quality deteriorated to “severe,” and neighbouring Haryana experienced a ‘very poor’ category.
In the same period last year and in 2022, Punjab recorded 67,020 and 45,464 stubble burning incidents, respectively. The recent surge in crop residue burning incidents is evident, with 639 cases on November 9, six on November 10, 104 on November 11, 987 on November 12, 1,624 on November 13, and 1,776 on November 14.
Paddy straw burning in Punjab and Haryana has been identified as a major contributor to the alarming increase in air pollution in Delhi during October and November. On Wednesday, Punjab reported a total of 30,661 farm fires, with Bathinda leading at 356 cases, followed by Moga (318), Barnala (264), Sangrur (262), Ferozepur (253), and Faridkot (225). In comparison, the state had reported 1,761 and 141 farm fires on the same day in 2021 and 2022, respectively.
Delhi’s 24-hour average Air Quality Index (AQI) reached 401 at 4 pm, marking a continuous deterioration from 397 on Tuesday, 358 on Monday, and significantly lower levels on Sunday (218) and Saturday (220).
Punjab declares red alert
Punjab Special Director General of Police (Law and Order) Arpit Shukla on Wednesday said a red alert has been sounded in all districts and legal action would be initiated if anyone was found burning stubble.
DGP Gaurav Yadav had appointed Shukla as the Police Nodal Officer to monitor action against stubble burning.
He said that CPs/SSPs have been directed to engage farmers, citizens and various stakeholders to sensitise them about the ill-effects of the stubble burning, which is also a violation of law and action and action could be initiated against them.
“All DSPs and SHOs have been asked to have discussions with Sarpanches and Kisan leaders to sensitise them about the ill effects of stubble burning, which not only affect the urban people but each and every individual,” said Shukla, who was on a tour to review the stubble burning cases in Hoshiarpur and SBS Nagar district.
He also called a meeting of all gazetted rank officers and Station House Officers (SHOs) in Hoshiarpur and SBS Nagar to review the status of stubble burning in their areas.