New Delhi:Delhi's pollution levels worsened on Wednesday even as the air quality index remained in the 'poor' category, with a government agency forecasting improvement in the situation on Thursday with cleaner easterly wind coming in.

According to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), Delhi's air quality index (AQI) was recorded at 268 on Wednesday morning. However, the data updated in the evening showed the average AQI of the past 24 hours at 256.

The figures are based on data collected from 34 monitoring stations in the city.

The 24-hour average AQI was 223 on Tuesday and 244 the day before. It was 254 on Sunday and 287 on Saturday.

An AQI between 0 and 50 is considered 'good', 51 and 100 'satisfactory', 101 and 200 'moderate', 201 and 300 'poor', 301 and 400 'very poor', and 401 and 500 'severe'.

However, the Ministry of Earth Sciences' air quality monitor, SAFAR, said the AQI has deteriorated to the lower end of 'very poor' category.

"Delhi's overall Air Quality Index (AQI) has marginally deteriorated and is in the lower end of the 'very poor' category as of Wednesday morning. It is being forecast that the air quality may improve by tomorrow and be in 'poor' category due to cleaner easterly wind intrusion," SAFAR said.

It said the AQI will be in the 'poor' category in the coming days.

The SAFAR synergised stubble burning fire counts around Haryana, Punjab and neighbouring regions stood at 849 for Tuesday.

The share of stubble burning in Delhi's PM 2.5 pollution stood at 15 per cent on Wednesday, the agency said adding it is likely to reduce on Thursday owing to expected change in wind direction.

The Delhi government has kickstarted its 'Red Light On, Gaadi Off' anti-pollution campaign for which it has deployed 2,500 environment marshals at 100 traffic signals across the city to generate awareness and curb vehicular pollution.

The drive will go on till November 15 from 8 am to 8 pm. It is an awareness drive by the Delhi government and no person will be issued challans, the government had said.


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Bengaluru, Nov 30: An internal assessment of the Karnataka Guarantee of Services to Citizens called 'Sakala' has put Mandya on the top while Bengaluru Urban stood last among the districts in providing services to people within the stipulated time.

Launched in April 2012, there are presently 1025 services related to 98 departments guaranteed under the Sakala scheme which are provided to the applicants within the time limit.

Eight years after the launch of the scheme, the Sakala department carried out the assessment of its performance.

The assessment revealed that 22.92 crore applications were received since the launch of the scheme, out of which 22.85 crore applications were disposed of.

Based on the number of applications received and disposed of, the department came out with the ranking.

Announcing the ranking, Karnataka Minister for Sakala, S Suresh Kumar told reporters on Monday that Mandya, Chikkamagaluru and Chikkaballapura are among the top three districts in providing services under the Sakala scheme within the time limit.

On the other hand, Bengaluru urban, Bidar and Raichur are among the least ranked districts in providing services.

"This assessment provides an opportunity to the respective districts to improve their citizen-oriented services," Kumar, who also holds the primary and secondary education portfolio, said.

The rankings were announced as the state launched the Sakala week during which period, the departments will have to create awareness among masses.

The Minister cited three reasons for the poor performance of Sakala, which are not accepting the applications, rejection of applications and delay in providing the service.

He said people do not know that there are appellants in each department where people can approach and appeal against the rejection and delay in providing services.

Kumar directed the deputy commissioners of the district to conduct a meeting of the Sakala Coordination Committees to analyse the performance of Sakala scheme.