New Delhi, Oct 15 (IANS) The Central government on Friday claimed that paddy residue burning events have been reduced by 69.49 per cent in Punjab, by 18.28 per cent in Haryana and by 47.61 per cent in the eight NCR districts of Uttar Pradesh during the one-month period since September 15 compared to the same period last year.
As the air pollution situation in the national capital region (NCR) started worsening slowly over the last few days, the Commission for Air Quality Management in NCR and Adjoining Areas (CAQM) has been actively monitoring paddy residue burning events from September 15.
According to a release from the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, the total reported residue burning events in Punjab are 1,286 since September 15 as against 4,216 for the same period of last year.
Similarly, in Haryana, the reported fire incidents were 487 as against 596, and in the eight districts, the total stubble fire incidents reported during this period are 22 as against 42 for the corresponding period of last year.
No fire counts have been reported from Delhi and two NCR districts of Rajasthan.
The first paddy residue burning was reported on September 16 in Punjab, September 18 in the NCR and September 28 in Haryana.
The major hotspots of paddy residue burning in the state of Punjab are Amritsar, Tarn Taran, Patiala, and Ludhiana. These four districts account for 72 per cent of stubble burning events.
The major hotspots in Haryana are Karnal, Kaithal and Kurukshetra, which account for 80 per cent of the stubble burning incidences.
The Commission is taking up with the state governments of Punjab, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh on a daily basis to ensure strict implementation of the action plan and the framework to curb paddy residue burning events.
CAQM has also held series of meetings with state government officials including the district collectors/district magistrates of Punjab, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh.
Out of a total 1,795 sites, where burning has been reported in Punjab, Haryana and eight NCR districts of Uttar Pradesh till October 14, as many as 663 fields have been inspected by the enforcement agencies and officials concerned of the respective states.
Environmental Compensation has been imposed in 252 cases.
Harvesting will be at its peak in the next few weeks and the state governments are taking steps as per the Plan of Action to improve the efficacy of enforcement and implementation to effectively tackle the problem of stubble burning.