NEW DELHI — Congress chief Rahul Gandhi on Sunday termed the deteriorating air quality in Delhi a "serious problem" and called for collective steps to reduce the pollution levels in the national capital.
He said no government can by itself, without the help of countrymen, ensure clean air to people.
"Air pollution in Delhi is a serious problem. It is our responsibility to take possible steps to reduce the pollution around us. Without the support of countrymen, no government can provide relief from air pollution," Gandhi said in a Facebook post in Hindi.
Delhi's air quality oscillated between "poor" and "very poor" category Sunday as authorities warned of days of severe pollution ahead.
The Central Pollution Control Board recorded the overall Air Quality Index (AQI) of Delhi at 292, while the Centre-run System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research reported an AQI of 318, which falls in the "very poor" category.
An AQI between 0 and 50 is considered "good", 51 and 100 "satisfactory", 101 and 200 "moderate", 201 and 300 "poor", 301 and 400 "very poor", and 401 and 500 "severe".
"A few days ago on my Facebook page I had shared Punjab farmer Gurbachan Singh's campaign to reduce air pollution. We have many Gurbachan Singhs around us. We should take inspiration from them and develop such desires. This (the effort) will not only benefit us but also decide the fate of future generations. The time to wake up is now," Gandhi said.
On 18 October, Gandhi had shared a news report about Singh's efforts to curb paddy stubble burning in Punjab's Tarn Taran district.
The air quality in Delhi might deteriorate to "severe" category in the coming days as the air becomes heavier and results in formation of smog, an official has said.