With an hourly PM 2.5 concentration of 1,970 micrograms per cubic metre at 1am on the night after Diwali, the pollution readings at Vivek Vihar — a busy residential area in east Delhi — touched 33 times the safe standard, the highest in the national capital after the cracker ban across NCR was widely flouted.
The safe standard for PM 2.5 concentration is 60 micrograms per cubic metre. Mundka in west Delhi followed close behind with the hourly PM 2.5 concentration touching 1,853 micrograms per cubic metre, while Rohini in north Delhi, another bustling residential area, recorded an hourly PM 2.5 concentration of 1,798 micrograms per cubic metre, Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) data showed.
In contrast residential areas around Aurobindo Marg may have stuck more closely to the ban, with hourly readings touching a high of just 668 micrograms per cubic metre there. Similar low readings were recorded at Najafgarth (631 micrograms)., Dwarka Sector 8 (889 micrograms) and Pusa (758 micrograms), indicating some compliance in terms of the firecracker ban. All stations recorded PM2.5 readings over 10 times the safe standard on Diwali day, DPCC data shows.