Kolkata: West Bengal’s Howrah topped the list of the most polluted cities in India on Wednesday.
As per the Air Quality index, its air quality was much worse than Delhi and other cities in the National Capital Region, which have seen an improvement in the situation over the last few days.
Bhiwadi in Rajasthan was the second-worst polluted city as termed by the index.
According to the daily AQI bulletin of the Central Pollution Control Board, the 24-hour average AQI value of Howrah at 4pm on Wednesday was 285, followed by Bhiwadi (267), Kolkata (266) and Delhi (211).
On the AQI scale, a value of 0-50 is considered good quality air; 51-100 satisfactory; 101-200 moderate; 201-300 poor; 301-400 very poor and 401-500 severe. On May 1, during the pan-India Covid-19 lockdown, both Kolkata and Howrah registered AQI values of less than 50.
“Ghushuri is an industrial area, densely populated and registers heavy traffic movement. We have asked the police and local authorities to sprinkle water on the roads so that pollution levels could be kept under control,” said a WBPCB official.
“Steps have also been initiated to keep pollution levels under control in hot spots of Kolkata. Fire tenders have been deployed at the dumping sites to douse flames which often break out because of methane gas. The leather units which burn scarps leading to severe pollution in east Kolkata have been closed down,” it added.