The air quality in Bangladesh’s capital Dhaka has become a big concern for its residents as it held the top position among cities in the world with worst air quality for the last couple of days, even on Tuesday morning.
It had an AQI score of 236 at 7:48am. The air was classified as ‘very unhealthy’ and in this state of air everyone may experience serious health effects.
When the AQI value is between 201 and 300, the entire population is more likely to be affected while children are advised to limit outdoor activities in this situation.
Moreover, the situation notifies health warnings of emergency conditions.
India’s Delhi and Pakistan’s Lahore occupied the second and third positions in the list of cities with the worst air quality with AQI scores of 233 and 198 respectively.
The AQI, an index for reporting daily air quality, informs people how clean or polluted the air of a certain city is, and what associated health effects might be a concern for them.
In Bangladesh, the AQI is based on five criteria pollutants – Particulate Matter (PM10 and PM2.5), NO2, CO, SO2 and Ozone (O3).
The Department of Environment has also set national ambient air quality standards for these pollutants. These standards aim to protect against adverse human health impacts.
Dhaka has long been grappling with air pollution. Its air quality usually improves during monsoon.
Dhaka University (DU) authorities have decided to postpone for the next five weeks the new enrolment in evening courses.
The decision was taken at a seven-hour special session meeting of DU Academic Council held at Nabab Nawab Ali Chowdhury Senate Bahabn of the university on Monday.
The session also formed an 18-member committee, headed by DU Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Academic) Prof Nasreen Ahmad, to formulate guidelines for conducting evening courses at the university.
The committee members include Pro-VC (Administration) Prof Dr Muhammad Samad, Treasurer Prof Kamal Uddin, deans of all 13 faculties, and two directors of Institute of Business Administration and Institute of Education and Research.
The committee was asked to submit the guidelines within these five weeks.
Talking to reporters after the meeting, DU VC Dr M Akhtaruzzaman said, “Around 60 academic council members expressed their opinions about evening courses. Some members tried to support the existing evening courses while some opposed those.”
“After getting guidelines from the committee, those will be placed before the academic council meeting maintaining due process. Then, it’ll be decided whether the evening courses will be re-opened or not depending on the need of the country and the university’s capacity,” the VC added.