The air quality in Noida and Greater Noida improved further on Tuesday but remained in the "very poor" category, even as penalties amounting to Rs 5 lakh were slapped on offenders defying a ban on construction, officials said.
The Air Quality Index (AQI) of Greater Noida was 321 at 9.30 pm, down from 384 on Monday, while in Noida, it was 335, down from 383 the previous night, according to Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) data.
The average AQI for the last 24 hours was recorded at 351 at 4 pm in Noida and at 340 in Greater Noida.
An AQI between 300 and 400 falls in the "very poor" category, meaning it may cause respiratory illnesses on a prolonged exposure.
In a statement, the Noida Authority said penalties amounting to Rs 5.05 lakh were imposed on those found keeping construction material uncovered, in violation of the law.
The district administration and the local authorities in the twin cities carried out water sprinkling on the roads to check dust, as the region grappled with a "public health emergency".
Meanwhile, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said winds gusting up to 25 kmph were flushing out the pollutants faster.
"There are good chances of rains in northwest India on Wednesday night and Thursday due to a western disturbance. The precipitation will cover Delhi-NCR, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and western Uttar Pradesh," Kuldeep Srivastava, the head of the IMD's regional weather forecasting centre, said.
The Supreme Court-mandated Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority had last week announced a "public health emergency" in Delhi-NCR.
It had also banned construction activities and bursting of firecrackers, and ordered shutting down of the dirty fuel-based industries, among others, till November 5.
On Monday night, the EPCA extended the ban till November 8.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)