‘Take cue from Haryana’: Supreme Court raps Punjab govt on not curbing stubble burning

National Capital Delhi’s air quality deteriorated over night and the main factor responsible for the worsening condition of Delhi’s air pollution is being cited to stubble burning ahead of winters. On Tuesday the Supreme Court of India rapped the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) -led Punjab Government for not taking strict action and observed that farmers are being made a villain as they are not being heard in the court.

On Tuesday the Supreme Court was hearing petitions on the toxic air across the national capital Delhi that has created a chokehold like situation for the residents of the national capital. 

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“Why doesn’t the Punjab government make the process of crop residue 100% free? To burn it, all the farmer needs to do is light a matchstick. Machine for the management of crop residue to farmers is not everything. Even if the machine is given for free, there is diesel cost, manpower, etc,” the Supreme Court said, asking why Punjab cannot fund diesel, manpower, etc. and utilise the byproduct, Hindustan Times reports. 

“The state of Punjab should also take a cue from the state of Haryana in the manner in which financial incentives are given,” said the Supreme Court.

The apex court made a note of Punjab government‘s report that 8,481 meetings have been held with farmers and farm leaders to convince them to not burn paddy straws by state house officers.

According to the report, despite condemnation, On Monday, Punjab reported 634 farm fires with farmers in many areas continuing to set ablaze paddy straw despite police making persistent efforts to prevent stubble burning. The Punjab Police said it has registered 1,084 FIRs against erring farmers and imposed penalties worth 1.87 crore in 7,990 cases since November 8.

Delhi’s AQI today

Pollution levels in Delhi and its suburbs increased further overnight with the Air Quality Index (AQI) in the capital recorded at 365 at 9am on Tuesday, according to the Central Pollution Control Board.

The city’s AQI stood at 348 at 4pm on Monday, deteriorating from 301 on Sunday. The 24-hour average AQI, recorded at 4pm every day, was 319 on Saturday, 405 on Friday and 419 on Thursday.

Neighbouring Ghaziabad (340), Gurugram (324), Greater Noida (306), Noida (338) and Faridabad (336) also recorded ‘poor’ air quality.

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Updated: 21 Nov 2023, 03:03 PM IST

First appeared on www.livemint.com

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