New Delhi, Nov 6 (PTI) Environment Minister Gopal Rai on Friday said a 15-member impact assessment committee will ascertain the effectiveness of 'Pusa bio-decomposer' solution in reducing stubble burning in the national capital.
He also said that those found violating the ban on firecrackers can be fined up to Rs 1 lakh by the administration.
'The government has decided to set up an impact assessment committee to ascertain the effectiveness of Pusa bio-decomposer in reducing stubble burning in Delhi,” Rai said during a press conference.
'We have ascertained its effectiveness in non-basmati rice fields in Hiranki village in Narela. Now, the committee will determine its impact in the entire Delhi,” he said.
Rai said the impact assessment panel will have five MLAs and officials from Indian Agricultural Research Institute, Pusa, and the Agriculture Department.
The committee has been asked to submit an assessment report to the government within a week. The report will be presented before the Supreme Court after Diwali, he said.
According to scientists at Indian Agricultural Research Institute, Pusa, the solution can turn crop residue into manure in 15 to 20 days and therefore, can prevent stubble burning.
Rai hoped that the newly-constituted Commission for Air Quality Management in the National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas will ensure that other “states also use the cost-effective Pusa bio-decomposer to prevent stubble burning”.
'The Uttar Pradesh Police is arresting farmers for burning stubble, but I don't think that is the solution,” he said.
The minister said the share of stubble burning in Delhi's pollution rose to 42 per cent on Thursday, the maximum so far this season.
“There is pollution due to local sources as well, but emissions from stubble burning and firecrackers make the situation worse in Delhi,” he said.
He said that the Delhi government on Thursday announced a blanket ban on firecrackers from November 7 to November 30, considering the spike in the number of new COVID-19 cases amid worsening pollution levels.
'We have notified the ban and called a meeting on Monday to discuss an action plan to ensure implementation of the curbs on firecrackers,” he said.
The minister also said that those violating the ban can be fined up to Rs 1 lakh by the administration.
On traders facing economic loss due to the ban, he said the government's priority was to save lives first.
The minister also said that the government has received 2,300 complaints on the “Green Delhi” mobile application so far, of which 1,346 have been resolved.
Most of the complaints are related to garbage dumping from North MCD areas, and burning of biomass and plastic waste, he said. PTI GVS SMN SMN