Kejriwal govt shuts all schools, govt. offices for a week due to air pollution

Says his govt mulling over SC suggestion for a lockdown

New Delhi, Nov. 13 (Delhi Crown): The Delhi government has decided to shut all schools for a week beginning Monday (Nov 15) in view of the prevailing high levels of air pollution in the national capital, announced Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday.

In a bid to curb vehicular pollution, Kejriwal also announced that all government employees will work from home during the next week.

The air pollution has been in the “Severe” category for the past few days even as a thick cloud of haze and smog engulfed the city.

The decision to shut down schools was taken to ensure that children do not breathe polluted air, Kejriwal told reporters after an emergency meeting with his top officials.

 “Government officials will be working from home for a week”, he said and added that private offices are also advised to follow the same.

The chief minister also said that his government was thinking over the proposal for lockdown in Delhi. “Will present the plan to Supreme Court,” he added.

Meanwhile, construction activities have been prohibited in Delhi from November 14 to 17. Only yesterday Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai had imposed a fine of Rs 5 lakhs on a construction site of NBCC.

Kejriwal said that pollution level was rising in Delhi “due to stubble burning in neighbouring states” and called upon all stakeholders to work together to combat it. Delhi recorded its worst air quality index (AQI) level on Friday with a 24-hour average of 471, said media reports.

The AQI in the national capital remained in the “Severe” category on Saturday morning, with the AQI being recorded at 473.

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