Delhi Pollution: Delhi's famous odd-even car rationing scheme will now be implemented in the city from November 13 to 20 because of the deteriorating air quality index, Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai announced on Monday.
He further said that all the classes, excluding 10 and 12, will be shut till November 10.
Rai said that the ban on BS 4 diesel and BS 3 petrol cars in Delhi will continue, and all the construction-related work in the city is now halted for the time being.
The Odd-Even strategy curbs the usage of cars as per the last digits of their license plates. Under its strategy, vehicles whose license plate numbers end with odd digits (1,3,5,7 and 9) are allowed to move on roads on odd dates, while the ones ending in even digits (0,2,4,6, and 8) can run on even dates of the calendar.
Rai's statement came in the aftermath of a high-level meeting on the increasing air pollution in Delhi and the whole NCR region.
The meeting was chaired by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. Administrators of other concerned departments like Delhi Education Minister Atishi, and ministers Saurabh Bhardwaj, and Kailash Gahlot were also there at the meeting.
On Sunday due to a severe air quality index, the nation's capital was put under Centre's Stage IV of the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP).
Stage 4 is the last stage of the anti-pollution scheme, and it is started at least three days before the air quality index (AQI) exceeds the 450 mark in the national capital.
However, foresighted implementation could not happen this time. Under the last stage of the anti-pollution plan, work from home (WFH) is recommended for 50 per cent of employees of government and private offices.
With this, there is furthermore a complete ban on the entry of trucks into Delhi, except for those correlated with important services, and building works, even public schemes.
Stage IV of GRAP furthermore authorizes state governments to consider carrying out additional emergency measures such as the closure of educational institutions and colleges and the odd-even rule.
The Environment Minister of Delhi had called for work-from-home for 50 per cent of staff in government and offices in Delhi will be taken later.
Delhi's air quality index turned from the 'very poor' rating to the 'severe' class on November 3 Friday and has remained the same for four consecutive days.
As per the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), on Monday, Delhi recorded an overall air quality index of 437 at 9 a.m.