State Pollution levels: Inspite of High Court ban and fixed time limits the Pollution level of various cities of Punjab saw increase in Pollution level and even the burning of crackers took place after the fixed time limit. However, the ban did show some effect as the Pollution levels in State was lower as compared to the ones recorded during the festival last year.The analysis of air quality data of Punjab (during Diwali 2017) by Punjab Pollution control board (PPCB) shows that the pollution level in the air has increased by 24% on Diwali as compared to Pre Diwali day. If we compare it from last year the Pollution level is much less as last year there was a increase of pollution by 70% on Diwali day (in 2016). As per the Information Air quality index (AQI) has increased from 328 as compared to AQI of 265 on pre Diwali day indicating an increase in pollution level by 24% only. It means the average air quality across State was “very poor”, and in some of the areas where the level was not recorded it was at “severe” levels. The data released by PPCB indicates that Air Quality Index (AQI) of Punjab on last year Diwali (Diwali 2016) had increased from 130 on Pre Diwali day to 228 on Diwali day thereby recording an increase of 70% in the pollution level. Giving the city wise detail a spokesman of Punjab Pollution control board (PPCB) stated that the percentage increase in Air quality index (AQI) in Mandi Gobindgarh has been recorded as 17% this year as compared to about 163% last year and that shows there was a great Impact of Highcourt orders on People of Mandi Gobindgarh. Similarly this increase in AQI in Ludhiana has been noticed as 24% this year as compared to 50% last year. Amritsar city witnessed percentage increase in AQI from the Pre Diwali day to Diwali day by 45% this year as compared to 63% increase on diwali day last year.According to Deputy Director Charanjeet Singh of PPCB the level of Respirable Suspended Particulate Matter (RSPM) in the air this year has been higher than the last year because of low level of air dispersion due to very low wind velocity and early harvesting of paddy crop. He stated that incidents of paddy straw burning recorded about 3 times increase in the number of incidents on Diwali day at 1188 as compared to average of 400 per day incidents on pre Diwali days which results in more Pollution and the cities registered ‘poor air quality’ on Diwali night.
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