The residents of Crossings Republik woke up to a nightmare today morning as the entire township was covered in a film of black soot. The soot, alleged the residents, emanated from a multinational firm, Continental Carbon Pvt Ltd running nearby.
Such was the intensity of the black carbon dust floating in the air that it literally looked like a cloud hanging over the entire township, complained the residents.
Payal Tripathi, a resident of Paramount Symphony, said, “First thing that I saw in my balcony today morning was a thick layer of soot on the floor. It was horrifying to look into the sky.”
The residents of the area complained that the pollution impacted their health severely. Many complained of respiratory problems, irritation in eyes, blurred vision and sore throat.
“Kids were coughing all day. Many of them were roaming wearing a pollution mask,” added Tripathi.
The situation was so frightening, said the residents, that most of the senior citizens did not even stepped out of the houses.
However, this is not the first time that something like this has happened. In fact, it has become an annual affair in winters as the dew in the air blocks carbon particles, making them mix with the dew and stay suspended in the air.
Krishna Kant Kulsheshthra, a resident of Supertech Livingston, said that the high levels of pollution have become an annual affair in the area.
Considering that the entire Delhi-NCR is already witnessing a rise in the pollution levels over the past week, the situation looks even more alarming.
In December 2017, the Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) had ordered Continental Carbon to shut down after it was found that the firm was violating the provisions of Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981, adding to air pollution in the vicinity.
However, AP Abraham, head of operations at Continental Carbon told City Spidey that the firm was reopened in April 2018.
Responding to the allegations of polluting the air, Abraham said that the carbon emission is adequately scanned in house with mechanism available in the public domain.
"Our stacks are 24X7 monitored online with Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) checking the level of carbon emitted from them. Also, CPCB officials routinely visit and check our emission levels," he said.
Meanwhile, the residents have started a Twitter campaign to make the authorities take firm action. They have been tweeting Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and DM Ghaziabad Ritu Maheshwari to take stricter action against the firm.
DM Ritu Maheshwari said that the UPPCB would inspect the factory premises. “Last year, we had shut down the factory. Now, the onus is on the UPPCB whether to shut the firm or not,” she said.