The apex court had suggested on Saturday that the Centre and Delhi government contemplate imposing a lockdown in the city for two days in view of the peak levels of pollution that the national capital has witnessed over the past week.

The centre and states should consider work-from-home for their employees in and around Delhi and farmers should be persuaded to not burn farm waste to cut down pollution, the Supreme Court said again on Monday.

“You tell us how do you plan to take the emergency measures? Two-day lockdown? What is your plan on lowering the AQI (Air Quality Index) levels?” the bench questioned Centre and the states.

The court directed the centre to call an emergency meeting od states and authorities to chalk out steps to reduce toxic smog on Tuesday and shunned the Delhi government for their excuses.

The Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, disclosed that ten per cent of the pollution was due to farm waster burning, to which the court responded stating that is now clear that farm wastes do not account for a large percentage of the pollution.

The court’s observations earlier came in on Saturday, while hearing a case in the matter when a bench of judges including CJI NV Ramana, Justices DY Chadrachud and Surya Kant labelled the air quality in Delhi as ‘severe’, that is expected to dip further in the coming two or three days, asking the Centre to take an emergency decision.

“Tell us how we can reduce AQI from 500 at least by 200 points. Take some urgent measures. Can you think of two days lockdown or something? How can people live? We will look at a long term solution later,” said the bench.

“You have to look at this issue beyond politics and government. Something must happen so that in two to three days we feel better,” the bench told Centre.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Centre, informed the bench of judges that the government will hold a meeting on Saturday, focusing on the emergency situation of air pollution in Delhi.

Also read: Pollution forces schools to shut: Is Delhi looking at lockdown?


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