Delhi Police spokesman Madhur Verma said data was not immediately available at how many places the police took action against those flouting the Supreme Court directive on Diwali day.
As per the Centre-run System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), Delhi's air quality is expected to deteriorate to "severe plus emergency" category after Diwali.
"But, considering total emission loads, especially from firecracker bursting, witnessed in 2017, the air quality is expected to be "very poor" over the next 48 hours", he said.SAFAR's forecast said particulate matter (PM) in the air will reach its highest levels between midnight and 3am on November 7 and November 8 (Wednesday night to early Thursday morning), as pollution from crackers will start settling towards the surface.
Warning that the Diwali day is expected to be polluted, weather analysts say that while now the polluting north-westerly winds are blowing higher at 5,000 meters, bringing a temporary relif to the region, the particles will start settling down, adding to pollution on Diwali.
While increasing air pollutants make it hard to breathe, pollution on Diwali would add to the woes of residents.
Coarser and highly risky PM2.5 or particles with diameter less than 2.5 mm continue to dominate the pollution factor in Delhi, and are still at least four times higher than the national standards and nine times the global standards. A SAFAR official said intensified stubble burning was contributing almost 24 percent to the air pollution in Delhi. On Monday, air quality across NCR had worsened to "severe-plus" or "emergency" levels due to north-westerly winds that brought stubble smoke from Punjab and Haryana, while the high moisture levels trapped the local and external pollutants in Delhi. An unidentified official of the pollution board said the recommendation was made as such vehicles cause heavy pollution, which could lead to a further decline in air quality.
"We are supporting the project by providing salt mix for inducing artificial rains".
In 2016, the government tried to explore the possibility of cloud seeding for artificial rain but the plan never worked out.
Twenty-three out of 26 monitoring stations with AQI data across Delhi reported a severe pollution level, meaning most of the city's air would affect even the healthy people.
The protesters held placards displaying messages like "Delhi air is poisonous", "breathing is killing me", '#My Right to Breathe" and "Unbreathable India' outside the Indira Pariyavaran Bhawan.