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India to step up air-pollution awareness campaign

India’s Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said his ministry will launch a massive people-oriented awareness campaign in an attempt to address the pervasive air pollution problems in the country, The Times of India reported.

The minister said that he has adopted a “consultative and cooperative” approach to improve air quality in the country, which has been ranked one of the poorest in the world. He released the action points that were submitted by the National Capital Region of Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. So far, three review meetings with the states have taken place since April, he said.

On vehicular pollution, the Delhi government has launched a surveillance programme against fuel adulteration of both diesel and petrol by the food supplies and consumer affairs department. In addition, 3,734 overloaded vehicles have been impounded in the past seven months. Delhi’s transport department also is planning to implement a remote-sensing based Pollution Under Control (PUC) checking system inspired by Kolkata, and plans to deploy 1,380 semi low-floor buses, 500 mini-buses and 1,000 cluster buses by the end of 2016 to augment public transport.

Meanwhile, Haryana reported that only BS-IV compliant vehicles are being registered in the state.