Even as Delhi and Chennai remained enveloped in thick blanket of smog a day after Diwali, the Kolkata residents woke up to a pleasant day. Good weather including drizzling on Diwali night meant that particulate matter (PM) settled on the ground bringing much needed relief to kids and those suffering from respiratory problems. Even the data collected by West Bengal Pollution Control Board showed that four key locations were rated as ‘Good’ in two places (Haldia and Durgapur). However, it was ‘Satisfactory’ in Howrah and in one place it was ‘Severe’ (Rabindra Bharati University) around midnight. The situation was better during the morning hours.
“Due to rain in most parts of Bengal this year the pollution level was low as particulate matter settled on the ground. It precipitated. I would also like to commend the state administration for being extra vigilant this time to arrest people who were involved in selling banned crackers.” WBPCB chairman Kalyan Rudra told News18.
Interestingly, in Howrah, parts of South Kolkata, Salt Lake and Chitpur — where most non-Bengalis reside and Diwali is their main festival —the pollution level was low.
Since last two days all the police stations in and around Kolkata were alerted and the officers were asked to intensify their vigil to prevent cracker traders from selling banned items.
Around 102 complaints were received from various parts of the city and 274 people were arrested. Total 208 kg of banned crackers were seized.
Inspector General of Police, Law and Order, Anuj Sharma said, “Since most of the people could not burst crackers due to rain and strict patrolling by our officers, they might try to burst it today. We are fully prepared.”