(3 Nov 2019) An expert panel in India’s capital this week declared a health emergency due to air pollution, with authorities ordering the closure of schools until November 5.
The Supreme Court-appointed panel is also temporarily banning construction activity in the New Delhi region to control the dust in the air.
Air pollution in New Delhi generally peaks around November 1 due to a combination of smog from fireworks set off during a Hindu festival and smoke from the burning of agricultural fields in the neighbouring states.
New Delhi’s top elected official Arvind Kejriwal has already announced a plan to restrict the movement of private cars in the capital for nearly two weeks, beginning Monday.
Private cars running on petrol and diesel will be allowed in New Delhi only on alternate days from November 4 to 15 depending on whether they have even or odd numbered plates.
Kejriwal said that similar restrictions in 2016 reduced air pollution up to 13%.
India is home to many of the world’s most polluted cities.
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