The National Green Tribunal on Friday allowed construction activities to resume in Delhi, asking the government to take preventive measures to keep pollution in check. The panel, however, kept its order prohibiting industrial activity and crop burning in place and directed the Delhi government to continue sprinkling water wherever the air quality was still poor.
The tribunal also ordered the governments of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh to sprinkle water to settle pollutants. It asked these states and the Delhi government to file a status report within two weeks.
Delhi and several parts of North India have been covered in a toxic smog since November 7, leaving the governments of the National Capital Region scrambling to bring in measures in the eleventh hour to bring down pollution levels.
Crop burning in states around the National Capital Region was one of the factors blamed. Schools and colleges were closed for a week. Pollution had risen to dangerous levels in 2016 as well.
The court also lifted the ban on the entry of trucks in the Capital, warning authorities that the order should be properly regulated.
On Thursday, the Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution (Control and Prevention) Authority withdrew the ban on the entry of trucks in the Capital and a fourfold increase in parking fees.