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Restrict outdoor activities of your kids, Govt advisory to parents

NEW DELHI: The Delhi government restricted outdoor activities in schools and asked parents to follow the same at home when the pollution level in the city touched alarming levels earlier this month.
Schools were remained closed for a week when the situation turned worse. After two days of relatively cleaner air, the air quality of Delhi once again turned 'very poor' on Monday as the impact of sporadic drizzle in flushing out pollutants ebbed and more vehicles hit the streets on the first working day of the week.
"Schools are directed to explain to parents about the worrisome air pollution situation prevailing in and across Delhi and appeal to them to further restrain their children from undertaking outdoor activities till severe pollution condition persists," Directorate of Education (DoE) said in an official order.
"Outdoor activities and exposure in polluted conditions could have long-term detrimental effects on the health of children. Therefore, parents may be requested to adopt the preventive approach to safeguard their child's health," it added.
The directive by the DoE comes following an advisory from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) which recommended restricting outdoor activities for children among other measures as part of the Graded Response Plan for dealing with the pollution situation.
Meanwhile, the Delhi government in a letter to the chief of the Delhi Pollution Control Committee, said ambient air quality has improved comparatively but things will deteriorate.
"However, various meteorological forecasts and reports indicate that this phase is temporary and ambient air quality may once again worsen in the coming weeks," Delhi environment minister Imran Hussain wrote. He also issued a slew of directions, including roadside spraying of water, mechanical sweeping and preventing burning of waste in the open to combat the rising pollution levels.
He said municipal bodies should avoid manual sweeping and in case of alternates are not available then water must be sprinkled beforehand?.
AQI remains 'very poor'
NEW DELHI: The air quality of national capital marginally dipped on Tuesday and remained "Very Poor" after the Air Quality Index became 300 which wad around 326 on Monday.
However, forecasters have emphasised that the city's air quality will remain in the 'very poor' category and chances of it deteriorating further in the coming days are less as the incursion of pollutants from external sources has stopped.
The Central Pollution Control Board's (CPCB) Air Quality Index (AQI) in Delhi was 'severe' with a score of 326 as it was 292 on Sunday and 298 on Saturday.
"An AQI value between 301 and 400 is classified as 'very poor'. Prolonged exposure to such air quality may trigger respiratory illness," the CPCB says.
"More than Delhi, areas surrounding the city received drizzle. It helped wash out the accumulated particulates. That is the reason the city enjoyed the season's best quality air over the last two days. But now the impact of rain is slowly diminishing.
"Temperature levels have dropped and moisture has also marginally increased. The current air quality is a play of those meteorological conditions and emissions from internal sources," SAFAR project director, Gufran Beig said.
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