Delhi pollution
Delhi pollution: CM Arvind Kejriwal bans all construction, use of diesel generators for 10 days. In picture: Pollution and smog in Delhi.IANS File Photo

As a result of a ground-level dust storm in western India, Delhi residents woke up today to yet another dusty morning on Thursday. Air quality in the national capital remained at 'severe' and 'hazardous' levels throughout the city.

AQICN, the leading authority on air quality globally, said that the worsening situation in Delhi is the strong anti-cyclonic winds blowing from Rajasthan. Thursday morning saw the PM10 (particles with the diameter less than 10mm) level at 778 in Delhi-NCR and 824 in Delhi, well beyond the severe level. As a result, visibility is very low with hazy conditions. Strong-anti cyclonic winds, blowing from Rajasthan, are the reason behind the worsening air quality.

Doctors have adviced people with respiratory conditions to avoid going out, as such air quality can instantaneously worsen the condition. They have also adviced people to wear face masks when they step out. Hospitals in the capital have noticed an uptick in the number of patients with respiratory diseases, highlighting the severity of Dehli's air quality.

The worst affected areas include R.K. Puram, which saw a drastic jump from 660 to 999, Mandir Marg (770), DITE Okhla (801), ITO (816) and Punjab Bagh (646). The air quality of Lodhi Road area and Rajpath area remained in 'poor' category at 262. Apart from Delhi, Gurugrum, Noida and Ghaziabad were also severely affected.

The current conditions are expected to last till Friday, as per reports. This summer, Northern India has been affected by several dust storms causing casualties, loss of property and worsening air quality. 

Earlier this year, the World Health Organisation ranked Delhi as the world's most polluted city and Kolkata as the second most polluted in the nation.

As per AQI levels, air quality is rated as-

  • Good: 0-50
  • Satisfactory: 51-100
  • Moderate: 101-200
  • Poor: 201-300
  • Very poor: 301-400
  • Severe/Hazardous: 401+

[With inputs from ANI]