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Cement-Coloured Sky, Air Quality “Very Poor” In Delhi On Diwali Day – dot newz

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Delhi’s AQI is predicted to degrade to the ‘severe’ category during Diwali.

New Delhi:

Delhi’s overall air quality was ‘very poor’ this Diwali afternoon, with expectations of it turning worse as the day progresses. At 2:21 pm, the capital’s overall Air Quality Index (AQI) was 339, according to a government air quality monitoring agency. 

The national capital’s air quality has seen a marginal improvement since morning but is expected to dip once firecrackers are lit to celebrate the festival late evening and at night. There’s a complete ban on the sale and use of firecrackers in Delhi but instances of people risking legal action to defy the ban are not uncommon. An NDTV investigation has also exposed how the sale of firecrackers continues in the capital.

At 8 am, Delhi’s AQI stood at 341, up from 314 at 4 pm on Wednesday. The 24-hour average AQI was 303 on Tuesday and 281 on Monday with overall AQI standing at 339, according to the System of Air Quality & Weather Forecasting & Research (SAFAR).

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AQI between zero 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’.

Record-breaking rainfall and other favourable weather conditions had led to a rare drop in pollution in Delhi, with residents last month breathing the cleanest air in at least four years but the authorities are warning that air quality is set to drop sharply in November, according to news agency Reuters.

SAFAR said “very calm” local Delhi wind conditions with little ventilation are expected for the next three days which will be unfavourable for dispersion of pollutants.

PTI11

Under a zero firecracker emission scenario, Delhi’s PM2.5 concentration is predicted to be in the upper end of the ‘very poor’ category from November 4 to November 6.

“However, even if we consider 50 per cent of firecracker load of 2019, the AQI is predicted to degrade to the ‘severe’ category during the period,” SAFAR said.

A delayed end to the monsoon, intermittent rains, and a sharp pick-up in wind speeds ensured that the concentration of hazardous, small airborne particles known as PM2.5 in a cubic metre of air averaged 72 in October when air quality typically takes a turn for the worse. That was sharply down from an average concentration of 126 recorded in October 2020 – 25 times over the World Health Organisation’s safe limit – according to data gathered by the state-run Central Pollution Control Board. But a confluence of factors, including falling temperatures, a drop-off in winter wind speed, and farmers preparing to torch farm waste of the previous rice crop to ready the field for planting the wheat crop, is likely to turn the air hazardous. 

Action is being taken, as part of the Delhi government’s ‘Patakhe Nahi Diye Jalao’ campaign, under relevant IPC provisions and the Explosives Act against anyone found burning crackers. This campaign was launched last month to create awareness against burning firecrackers on Diwali.

On September 28, the Delhi Pollution Control Committee ordered a complete ban on the sale and bursting of firecrackers in the national capital till January 1, 2022.



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India Is No.1 Food Supplier To Arab Nations After 15 Years – dot newz

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The Arab world is among Brazil’s most important trade partners.

Sao Paulo:

India surpassed Brazil in food exports to the League of Arab States for the first time in 15 years as the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted trade flows in 2020, according to data provided by the Arab-Brazil Chamber of Commerce to Reuters on Tuesday.

The Arab world is among Brazil’s most important trade partners, but its distance from those markets took its toll as the pandemic rattled global logistics.

Brazil accounted for 8.15% of the total agribusiness products imported by the 22 League members last year, whereas India captured 8.25% of that trade, ending Brazil’s 15-year advantage, the data showed.

Despite remaining competitive “from the farm gate in,” Brazil lost ground to India and other exporters such as Turkey, the United States, France and Argentina amid a disruption of traditional shipping routes.

Brazilian shipments to Saudi Arabia that once took 30 days could now take up to 60 days, according to the Chamber, whereas India’s geographic advantages allow it to ship fruits, vegetables, sugar, grains and meat in as little as week.

Brazil’s agricultural exports to the Arab League rose just 1.4% by value to $8.17 billion last year. Between January and October this year, sales totaled $6.78 billion, up 5.5%, as logistics problems subsided, Chamber data showed.

China’s push to boost its own food inventories during the pandemic also diverted some of Brazil’s trade with the Arabs, leading countries such as Saudi Arabia to step up promotion of domestic food production, while seeking alternative suppliers.

“It’s a turning point. The Saudis are still big buyers, but they are also net re-exporters of food,” the Chamber said in a statement.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)



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“BJP Development? Coconut Breaks A Road Open!” Akhilesh Yadav Sneers – dot newz

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Lucknow:

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav, ally Jayant Choudhary at his side, berated Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and the BJP on multiple issues today — including development, which the ruling party placed front and centre of the coming election. “What infrastructure has the BJP created,” he questioned, citing a recent headline from Bijnore that has raised many a chuckle in the state.

“The older tradition was — hit the coconut on the road and the coconut breaks. The new tradition they have started is hit the coconut on ground and the ground must break,” he told NDTV, speaking on the sidelines of a rally in Mathura attended by thousands.

Suchi Mausam Chaudhary, the BJP MLA from Bijnor Sadar, was left furious earlier this month at the traditional inauguration when bits of a 7-km road, renovated at a cost of Rs 1.16 crore, came off when struck by a coconut.

Challengers to the BJP government which came to power in the state with a sweeping mandate, the two leaders made a prediction. “Looking at anger among the people, BJP can even lose 400 seats. They will be wiped out in the western UP,” Akhilesh Yadav said.

Their sharpest barbs were reserved for Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.

In his address, Mr Yadav had spoken of the BJP “misrule” in terms of jobs, education development and farmers’ issues. Asked about his remark that the “Baba (Yogi Adityanath) just sits in Gorakhpur and rings a bell (while all this is happennig),” and how it would be received by the state’s Hindu voters, Rashtriya Lok Dal chief Jayant Chaudhary spoke up.

“Adityanath is not a symbol of Hindu unity, he can be questioned,” Mr Chaudhary said. “This is not an issue about Hindu pride but issues like unemployment. Adityanath said he will give 70 lakh jobs. Today, their own posters say they have given only four lakh jobs,” he added.

Akhilesh Yadav had other questions. “The Chief Minister should answer whether the man sitting in the jeep that mowed down farmers (in Lakhimpur Kheri) was the Union Home Minister’s son or not… Yogi must answer how many cases were against him that he removed himself after becoming the Chief Minister,” he added.



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Women’s Commission Seeks Report On BJP Leader’s Remark About Mumbai Mayor – dot newz

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Kishori Pednekar is the current Mayor of Mumbai. (File)

The Maharashtra State Commission for Women has asked the Mumbai police commissioner to submit a factual report about an alleged objectionable remark passed by BJP leader Ashish Shelar about mayor Kishori Pednekar in connection with the recent cylinder blast in Worli.

Taking to Twitter, the Commission’s chairperson Rupali Chakankar said “insulting” comments made about women by responsible public representatives “will not be tolerated”.

The Commission has, therefore, taken a “serious” note of the comment and asked the Mumbai police chief to submit a factual report in this connection, Ms Chakankar tweeted on Monday night.

In her letter to the police commissioner, Ms Chakankar claimed, “Shelar’s comment ”the Mumbai Mayor visited (those injured in the blast) after 72 hours of the incident, where were you (the mayor) sleeping for these many hours?” is being broadcast in the news media”.

“So, a factual report should be submitted in this connection as per section 12(2) and 12(3) of the Maharashtra State Commission for Women Act, 1993,” she said.

Three members of a family died after a gas cylinder exploded in their home in a chawl in Worli area of central Mumbai.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)



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