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Most polluted Kolkata, Howrah experience cleanest post-Diwali air in years

The two most polluted cities in West Bengal, Kolkata and Howrah, experienced the cleanest post-Diwali air quality in years. Due to the rain and strong winds brought on by cyclone  Sitrang on Monday night, the Air Quality Index (AQI) of the two cities fell to 37 and 36 respectively on Tuesday morning. The Central Pollution […]

The two most polluted cities in West Bengal, Kolkata and Howrah, experienced the cleanest post-Diwali air quality in years. Due to the rain and strong winds brought on by cyclone  Sitrang on Monday night, the Air Quality Index (AQI) of the two cities fell to 37 and 36 respectively on Tuesday morning. The Central Pollution Control Board said that Kolkata’s AQI was 37 in the good category at 7am on Tuesday. Mumbai’s AQI was 193, Delhi’s was 326, and Chennai’s was 230. (poor).

The AQI for Kolkata a day after Diwali was 207 last year, falling into the poor category. 187 (moderate) was the number in 2020, 219 in 2019, and 326 in 2018.

On Tuesday morning, the industrial city of Howrah’s AQI decreased to 36. A day after Diwali in 2021, Howrah’s AQI was 265; in 2020, it was 217.

Bibhuti Biswas, 72, a Kolkata resident, said such an air quality after the Kali Puja night is unthinkable. “Usually on Kali Puja night, we have to keep windows closed to avoid smoke and pollution. You get a burning sensation in your eyes and throat. But it was windy and there was some rain flushing out the pollution. We could keep the windows open thanks to the cyclone.”

On Monday night, Cyclone Sitrang made landfall in Bangladesh close to Barisal, causing high winds and light rain in Kolkata (2.4 mm).

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AIR QUALITYCYCLONE SITRANGDiwaliHOWRAHKolkataWest Bengal