Children to Govt: Save Us from Pollution in Delhi

Children - who study at the RMN Foundation free school - have launched a new pollution-control campaign in Delhi.
Children – who study at the RMN Foundation free school – have launched a new pollution-control campaign in Delhi.

Children – who study at the RMN Foundation free school – have launched a new pollution-control campaign in Delhi. The campaign urges Delhi government to save Delhi residents – particularly children – from all types of pollution, including air pollution, dust pollution, noise pollution, and water pollution.

These children – along with the founder of RMN Foundation Rakesh Raman – hold informative placards and stand near the traffic lights of the city to distribute pamphlets that explain the harmful effects of pollution on residents’ health.


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A new IQAir AirVisual report, which covered 3,000 cities of the world, has revealed that Gurugram (a.k.a. Gurgaon) a suburb of the Indian capital New Delhi is the most polluted city of the world while 22 of the top 30 polluted cities are in India. Delhi remains the most polluted capital across the world.

The air quality in the national capital region has been constantly deteriorating. According to the findings of a new study released in 2018, nearly 15,000 people died prematurely in Delhi during 2016 from illnesses linked to Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5 pollution. In other words, pollution is killing nearly 42 people everyday in Delhi.

Pollution in Delhi is particularly harmful to children, as a study reveals that paediatric asthma incidence is associated with exposure to traffic-related air pollution (TRAP).

The residents of Delhi are now facing an immediate threat from lethal dust and noise pollution as cooperative group housing societies (CGHS) are carrying out Floor Area Ratio (FAR) extended construction in the occupied housing complexes where millions of people – men, women, children, and senior citizens – are already living.

An interactive tool on the Breathe Life 2030 website shows a Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5 level of 143 micrograms per cubic metre (annual mean) in New Delhi. This is more than 14 times over the WHO (World Health Organization) safe level of 10 µg/m3. Simply put, the people of Delhi are inhaling poison from the air.

Bureaucratic and political corruption is the main reason for lethal pollution in Delhi. While the corrupt authorities in Delhi are not taking any steps to tackle pollution, the distressed citizens have no other option but to leave the city.

It is now being observed that many people are running away from Delhi like refugees or Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). As a result, India is falling in the category of countries with large IDP populations – such as Syria, Colombia, Iraq, Congo, Sudan, Nigeria, and Somalia.

Now there is an immediate need for the UN and other international refugee welfare agencies to provide environmental asylum to Indian citizens who want to leave their homes to live in clean environments.

Also, strict economic, diplomatic, and trade sanctions must be imposed on India because of the government’s failure to control pollution and protect the environment.

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Rakesh Raman