In a bid to tackle pollution, mainly in winter, Delhi will go back to the odd-even number vehicle plan, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal said, adding that the plan will be implemented between November 4 and 15. According to a state government statement, this follows environment experts’ directive to introduce vehicle rationing and face masks as short-term protective steps during the winter, when the air quality in the capital plummets alarmingly.
According to Kejriwal, the Delhi government is procuring N-95 quality masks for distribution among citizens in the coming months. “In Diwali, firecrackers cause massive pollution and smoke gets trapped, as a result of which it becomes difficult to breathe in Delhi,” Kejriwal said. Experts said the use of pollution masks could mitigate health risks to a great extent. “A study conducted by EPIC India across 3,500 slum residents of Delhi in winter of 2018, it was found that take-up of masks was the highest when it was distributed free,” the statement said.
Earlier, he convened a meeting with environment and sustainability experts to chalk out an action plan to tackle winter air pollution. Delhi’s previous experiments with the odd-even plan yielded mixed results and public opinion was sharply divided.