Sports minister finally approves cricket players to leave for India

People sign a billboard during a signature campaign against pollution in New Delh

Wicketkeeper-batsman Kusal Perera, who has not appeared in worldwide cricket since an injury he sustained in the Champions Trophy, has been recalled in the 16-man Sri Lanka squad for the three-match ODI series against India, beginning on December 10 at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) stadium, Dharamsala.

During the match, which India won by 378 runs, Sri Lankan players had to wear masks to protect themselves from Delhi's heavy air pollution.

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) on Tuesday (5) announced the squad of 16 players selected to play the 3 match ODI series against India from 10th to 17th December in India.

Delhi's government has been widely criticised over measures taken to combat pollution, and for allowing the cricket Test between India and Sri Lanka to go ahead.

"Situation is getting from poor to worst, children are suffering and the Delhi Govt has not even filed its action plan". Haryana and Uttar Pradesh have already filed their reports.

Pollution is considered severe plus or emergency when the readings are above 300 and 500 respectively. The corresponding prescribed standards are 60 and 100.

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Delhi has been ranked among the world's most polluted capital cities, with air quality worsening in winter as cooler air traps pollutants near the ground.

The Air Quality Index (AQI), as recorded by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), also reflected the rise in the levels of these ultrafine air-borne particulates, which manage to lodge deep in the lungs and even enter the bloodstream. It is classified as "very poor".

An AQI average above 300 is considered hazardous and is very likely to affect the entire population.

India pacer Mohammed Shami on Monday said the pollution level was not as high as was made out by Sri Lanka.

Humidity has risen from 44.3 per cent to 51 per cent while average temperature has dipped by about two degrees since November 27.

The weatherman has forecast a partly clear sky later in the day and mist tomorrow morning.

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