Delhi may ban NCR vehicles during Games | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Delhi may ban NCR vehicles during Games

Movement of vehicles, especially of those making daily trips between Delhi and the National Capital Region towns, could be severely restricted — even barred from entering the Capital — during the Commonwealth Games.

delhi Updated: May 11, 2010 02:00 IST
Avishek G Dastidar

Movement of vehicles, especially of those making daily trips between Delhi and the National Capital Region towns, could be severely restricted — even barred from entering the Capital — during the Commonwealth Games.

This is just one of the drastic measures the Delhi government is being forced to consider to quickly bring air pollution down to acceptable levels during the Games now just four months away.

The Supreme Court-appointed Environmental Pollution Prevention and Control Autho-rity (EPCA), experts from IIT Delhi, NGO Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), and others, are preparing a list of “contingency measures” for the Delhi government.

“Vehicles from NCR and other states make around 2 million trips to and from Delhi every day. We need to check this fleet during the Games,” said Bhure Lal, chairman, EPCA.

Delhi does not have a concrete plan yet. “Our plan for air pollution control during Games is yet to be finalised. We are looking forward to proposals from the expert bodies,” Delhi Environment Secretary Dharmendra Kumar said on Monday.

An assessment of Delhi’s air quality by EPCA and CSE has shown that levels of key air pollutants like oxides of nitrogen, tiny particulate matters and ground-level ozone, exceeded acceptable standards 92 per cent of the days of 2010.

As part of cleaning the air, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) will start the country’s first air-pollution forecasts with automated monitoring stations in Delhi.

The 48-hourly forecasts will have pollution alerts on 2500 locations across the city. “It will account for the dust coming from other states,” said Prashant Gargava, senior environmental engineer, CPCB.

Other drastic measures doing the rounds include stopping of all construction activities at least a fortnight prior to Games, checking the movement of government-owned vehicles, and putting a cap on the number of Delhi’s own vehicles on the road.