Agencies confirm cases of crop burning near NCR
NEW DELHI: After written requests to the Haryana government by the Environment department of Delhi, the Haryana State Pollution Control Board (HSPCB) has confirmed that paddy stubble burning – which triggers episodes of smog across Delhi-NCR during winters – is slowly picking up across parts of Haryana and Punjab.
HSPCB has confirmed two reports of stubble burning, while NASA's web fire mapper is showing a few red dots scattered across the NCR, including in Punjab, sparking concern among the states.
Haryana had begun satellite monitoring of the region on September 22.
Since then, authorities have found two instances where farmers set paddy straw afire, the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) has been informed.
"Both confirmed cases were in Panipat. One more case was reported from Fatehabad, but officials are yet to confirm whether it was a case of stubble burning," an HSPCB official said.
Meanwhile, the EPCA – a Supreme Court-appointed body – is hopeful that the vigil mounted by state authorities and awareness campaigns would bear fruit, preventing a repeat of the last few years, when smoke from stubble burning severely affected Delhi's air quality.