District pollution board levied a fine of Rs 5.8 Lakh on 12 developers after Ghaziabad was found to be the most polluted city in India with an air quality index of 430 on Monday.
In view of deteriorating air quality of Delhi-NCR, as many as 14 under construction real estate projects in Rajnagar Extension were fined and closed on Monday by Ghaziabad authorities for allegedly violating the construction norms and flouting the Graded Response Action Plan running in the city.
Chief of district pollution board AK Tiwari said that a fine of Rs 5.8 lakhs has been levied on 12 developers.
The move was taken under the Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) guidelines after city’s air quality index (AQI) touched the severe category on Monday.
With AQI value of 430, Ghaziabad was found to be the most polluted city in India, followed by Kanpur with AQI of 422. This was the third consecutive day when the city’s AQI remained in the severe category. On Saturday, the AQI was recorded at 404 while on Sunday it was 415.
The worsening pollution levels have severely impacted the health of the residents living on upper floors of high rises in Indirapuram, Rajnagar Extension, and Crossings Republik.
Lipika Bhushan, a resident of ATS Advantage in Indirapuram, said that the pollution level is so bad on the upper floors that she can’t even open the windows and doors of her flat throughout the day. “We have installed an air purifier at home which is continuously showing AQI above 300.”
Gyanvardhan Singh, a resident of 12th floor in Gaur Cascades in Rajnagar Extension, shared that their life has become miserable over the past couple of weeks. “We have stopped stepping into our balcony. The pollution is so evident at this height that our eyes start to itch the moment we open the windows,” he added.
There has been a surge of breathing-related illnesses and allergies reported by the residents, however, the doctors say the situation will only get worse till Diwali.
Dr Anshul Varshney, physician and diabetologist practicing in Rajnagar Extension, said that the number of patients complaining of bronchitis, irritation in eyes and breathing difficulties has doubled over the past one week. “They all question about the cause of their illness. It is the poisonous air that we are breathing”
Varshney advised against the use of mosquito repellents, Agarbatti and incense. “These things further pollute the air inside the house and create breathing difficulties. For temporary relief, anti-pollution masks can be used,” he added.
Meanwhile, the district administration had earlier taken a slew of measures to curb rising air pollution. All construction activities are banned from November 1 to November 10. Mechanized sweeping is being done on over 23 main roads of Ghaziabad. Also, Municipal Corporation has deployed 17 water tankers for water sprinkling along 23 stretches of Ghaziabad.