The appeals by government and non-government bodies for celebrating a greener Diwali failed to have an effect on the public as people freely burst crackers this year.
Following the bursting of crackers at the Golden Temple Complex, the pollution around the Golden Temple was recorded almost three times more than normal.
The pollution level in various cities in Punjab remained almost the same as on last Diwali with the respirable suspended particulate matter (RSPM) recorded at 549 micrograms per cubic metre in Ludhiana, more than five times the permissible limit of 100 for residential areas and 150 for industrial areas.
The Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) this year monitored the air and noise pollutions at five places -- Amritsar, Jalandhar, Patiala, Ludhiana and Mandi Gobindgarh -- and in all places pollution was recorded three times more than the permissible limits.
"The data shows there is a slight dip in the RSPM value, but it is still much more than the permissible limits," said a PPCB official spokesman.
Against the 55 dbc limit, the noise recorded around the Golden Temple was 73 dbc.
Ludhiana recorded the maximum pollution in Punjab, followed by Amritsar. However, the oxides of nitrogen and sulphur remained within permissible limits.
City RSMP level (mg/cu m) RSMP level RSMP level Noise (dbc) Noise
A day before Diwali 2013 Diwali 2012 Diwali 2013 2012
Amritsar 223 370 358 66 66
Mandi Gobindgarh 172 250 192 74 73
Patiala 132 196 238 70 70
Jalandhar 232 270 294 72 72
Ludhiana 263 549 648 70 74
Golden Temple 202 371 390 73 74