Effects of pollution produced by wheat-residue burning on respiratory parameters of healthy inhabitants were investigated for two consecutive wheat cultivation periods (February-July in 2007 and 2008) at Patiala city of Punjab, India. A total of 51 selected subjects of the age group 13-53 were selected from five sites of Patiala for pulmonary function tests (PFTs), including force vital capacity (FVC), force expiratory volume in one second (FEV(1)), peak expiratory flow (PEF) and force expiratory flow between 25 to 75% of FVC (FEF(25-75%)) using a spirometer. High volume samplers (HVS) and an Andersen cascade impactor were also used to measure the concentration of suspended particulate matter (SPM) and particulate matter (PM) of size less than 10 mum. PFTs show significant decrease and particulate matter shows a significant increase during the burning period of wheat residue. Decrease in FVC and FEV(1) did not recover even after completion of the exhaustive burning period this is a more serious concern then PEF and FEF(25-75%). The results showed that the public exposure to relatively high levels of pollutants during the exhaustive burning period of wheat residue influences the PFTs of even healthy inhabitants.