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Goonj Delhi Center engulfed in flames

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New Delhi: Anshu Gupta, the founder of  the well-known NGO Goonj, on Friday posted pictures of a devastating fire at its Delhi center which took place on the night of Diwali and also claimed that it was because of firecrackers.

Gupta posted on Facebook the pictures of the fire at the NGO’s Sarita Vihar center and wrote that the fire lasted for about seven hours and was doused by 10 fire tenders.

Here I was asking you to spread the message against (fire) crackers and there a cracker did this to Goonj’s center in Delhi. Seven hours of unmanageable fire, 10 fire brigades till 2 a.m. on Diwali night. 3000 sq.ft of area, tonnes of material, where we all had put in our days and nights turned into ash!!

“Response on a few things from our Delhi office might be slow for the next couple of days as the team is fighting back with this huge loss of material, money and space!!” he added.

Gupta also added that they would strive to recover this loss through campaigns.

“We lost materials like winter clothes and blankets. It is a major loss, but I’m sure we will be able to recover it through our ongoing campaigns,” he said.

A police officer said that the fire was caused by firecrackers. He said a case has been registered in connection with the accident and loss caused is being assessed.

(Inputs from IANS)

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Delhi’s Air Quality Leads To Ban On Trucks And Construction

The measures include a ban on industries using coal and biomass, brick kilns, construction activities and entry of trucks into Delhi.

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India, air pollution, WHO, diwali, Pollution, Delhi, egypt, air quality
A man walks in front of the India Gate shrouded in smog in New Delhi, India. VOA

With no improvement in the air quality of Delhi-NCR even three days after Diwali, the environment authority on Saturday extended the ban on the entry of trucks, construction and polluting industries.

The Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) on Saturday ordered the Delhi government to extend the ban which was imposed on November 2.

Pollution, Delhi, egypt, air quality
As pollution levels spike, Delhi and its satellite towns are enveloped in a haze of smog. VOA

The restrictions imposed till November 10 were extended to November 12, by when there will be an improvement in the air quality of Delhi-NCR, as forecast by pollution monitoring agencies.

The restrictions were imposed by the EPCA under the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP).

Delhi’s air quality started deteriorating a day after Diwali to “severe-plus” or “emergency” due to fireworks and weather conditions like wind speed and dipping mercury, leading to lower dispersion rate of pollutants. The Air Quality Index (AQI) on Saturday was 401 or “severe”.

India, air pollution, WHO, diwali, Pollution, Delhi, egypt, air quality
A bird flies past the Humayun’s Tomb shrouded in smog in New Delhi, India. VOA

“The CPCB-headed task force has informed EPCA that given the prevailing adverse conditions, the following measures will remain until November 12, when it will further review the situation and inform us,” said EPCA Chairman Bhure Lal, in a letter to Delhi Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash, the Delhi Environment Secretary and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee.

Also Read: Delhi’s Pollution Brings Down The Diwali High

The measures include a ban on industries using coal and biomass, brick kilns, construction activities and entry of trucks into Delhi. The restrictions exclude power plants and waste to energy plants. (IANS)