Arvind Kejriwal says issue of Delhi pollution should not be 'politicised'

A woman and a child, wearing anti-pollution masks, walk along a road in New Delhi, Friday. Photo: PTI

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said the issue of pollution should not be "politicised" and called on all neighbouring states and the Centre to "sit together" and deliberate on how to prevent stubble burning as the air quality in the national capital dipped to alarming levels.

Keriwal said his government was not indulging in "blame game" but looking for solutions to pollution caused by stubble burning.

"This matter should not be politicised. People of Delhi did everything they could to reduce pollution in the city but concrete steps have to be taken against stubble burning," he said in a video message.

Kejriwal further questioned the pace at which the Centre is distributing straw management machines to farmers to stop stubble burning.

"Till now 63,000 machines have been made available to farmers in Punjab and Haryana. There are 27 lakh farmers in these states. How long would it take to distribute these machines to all these farmers. For how long do we have to bear this pollution," he said.

Kejriwal called on all neighbouring states and the Centre to "sit together" and deliberate on solving the pollution caused in Delhi due to stubble burning.


The chief minister also appealed to people to follow the odd-even road rationing scheme beginning Monday.

"I urge people to use to car-pooling when they are not able to drive their car during this scheme. I will also be following the scheme strictly," he said.

Delhi is witnessing one of the worst episodes of pollution.

At 2 pm, the AQI was recorded in severe category at 489, remaining points away from going off the chart.

An AQI between 0-50 is considered 'good', 51-100 'satisfactory', 101-200 'moderate', 201-300 'poor', 301-400 'very poor' and 401-500 'severe'. Above 500 falls in the 'severe plus' category.

The share of stubble burning in Delhi's pollution stood at 46 per cent on Friday, the highest so far. It dropped to 17 per cent on Saturday and is expected to be 12 per cent on Sunday, according to the Ministry of Earth Sciences' air quality monitor SAFAR.

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