Is Delhi’s Pollution driving People away?

Singaporean Raveen Misra and his family left Delhi for Mumbai 10 days ago when the air quality in the city worsened to a severe level. Although pollution during winter is an annual problem, the situation this year is “quite bad”, said Mr Misra, 38.

“We bought more air purifiers for the home, got all our helpers to put on masks. Shut and taped down all windows and balcony doors,” said the full-time parent, who relocated to Delhi because of his wife’s job posting. They have stayed there with their 14-month-old daughter for four years. “Going for walks or runs is just out of the question. Our daughter can’t even play in the garden.”

The situation has improved since the family left Delhi, but the air quality remains in the unhealthy category.

Ms Mary Roy, a 50-year-old Singaporean housewife who has been living in Delhi since 2008, returned to Singapore from Nov 10 to 13. “It was very bad. We did not take our child to school because of the pollution. She was coughing away.

“I went out without a mask and I was coughing,” said Ms Roy, whohas a sinus problem.

The thick grey smog is the result of a combination of factors, including burning of paddy crop at the end of harvest in the neighbouring states of Haryana and Punjab, vehicle and industrial pollution, and adverse weather conditions.

The pollution saw PM 2.5 levels going nearly 12 times over permissible limits. PM 2.5 level is a measure of fine particle matter linked to higher rates of chronic bronchitis, lung cancer and heart disease.

STAYED INDOORS

We bought more air purifiers for the home, got all our helpers to put on masks. Shut and taped down all windows and balcony doors. Going for walks or runs is just out of the question. Our daughter can’t even play in the garden.

MR RAVEEN MISRA, a 38-year-old Singaporean who stayed for four years in Delhi with his wife and daughter, now 14 months old. The family left for Mumbai 10 days ago when the air quality in the city worsened to a severe level.

COUGHING AWAY

It was very bad. We did not take our child to school because of the pollution. She was coughing away. I went out without a mask and I was coughing.

MS MARY ROY, a 50-year-old Singaporean who has been living in Delhi since 2008.
The authorities imposed emergency measures, from shutting down primary schools for a week to stopping all construction activity.

The diplomatic corps in Delhi even took up the issue of pollution with the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA). Mr Frank Hans Dannenberg Castellanos, dean of the diplomatic corps of around 150 embassies and high commissions, met MEA officials last Friday.

Mr Castellanos, who is also the Dominican Republic’s Ambassador to India, said he was asked by the diplomatic community to share their concerns on how the pollution “is affecting the inflow of tourism from some of our countries and the daily operations of some of the missions”.

Costa Rican Ambassador Mariela Alvarez wrote in a blog post recently that she had moved to Bengaluru because the air in Delhi was “unbreathable”. The envoy, who does not smoke, said “it is not funny to see your lungs expelling a dark residue” as if one were a smoker.

The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India conducted a survey involving 350 tour operators. It said Delhi is “bound to drop off from the map of international tourists who will pick ‘cleaner’ destinations”. Even domestic tourists are said to be avoiding Delhi, which has long been among the world’s most polluted cities.

Around eight million tourists visit India every year. But there are some people who feel that pollution is not a problem specific to Delhi or India. Mr Subhash Goyal, president of the Indian Association of Tour Operators, said: “There is no denying that this is a serious issue and it needs to be resolved. It is not unresolvable… This happens all over the world. The mask I am using, I bought it in Singapore during the haze.”

[contributed- source Singapore daily]

 

NEWSNET ONE

12 Responses to Is Delhi’s Pollution driving People away?

  1. Yes, Delhi is now polluted so much that its atmosphere has been effected badly and people there are falling ill because of harmful gases being released by vehicles and the factories.

  2. Delhi’s pollution levels are on average 16 times higher than the levels considered safe by the World Health Organization. In the past month, its Air Quality Index, which shouldn’t go above 150, has rarely come down below 300. At times, it has shot up to as much as 999 in some parts of the city.These dangerous factors are alarmingly driving people away from the capital at a maximizing rate indeed.

  3. It’s true that Delhi is no longer a place to take breath ,as it’s air is polluted like anything and the worst part is that the situation is worsening day by day and people are not ready to rise from their slumber. The day is no longer when Delhi will be considered as the smoke capital.

  4. It’s time to get over the problem don’t be panic first think over the solution and after launch it in positive manner

  5. yashswini Tiwary

    Many people said that the thick smog left bitter taste in the mouth and eyes watering. Hospitals have reported a rise in cases of respiratory distress, with elderly and children the worst hit.

    “There have been a large number of people in our pulmonary out-patient department with cough and breathlessness, without previous history of respiratory illness,” said professor GC Khilnani of the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).

  6. It’s not late. We should just realized our mistake and immediately start working for it. People should use public transport, bicycles, etc. As far as possible walking is good idea. Use of air conditioner, fridge should be reduced. Burning of waste materials should be avoided. We are the one who are responsible for all this. Now it’s high time to think and act accordingly.

  7. Even the retired govt servants specially senior citizens are looking for safe residential areas. At the same time more poor people from rural areas are migrating every day adding to the burgeoning population. More slums and sanitation problem. Delhi may be termed as city of slums in days to come.

  8. The pollution level at Delhi is high and it has huge negative impact on human lives. Currently Delhi needs a pollution control strategy to keep life normal throughout the year.

  9. If the city won’t take a stand, the winter there will turn into smog. This will leave the city covered in masks. This will not just lead to pollution but it will also affect the health of social beings around the place. People living there should realize this or the condition will worsen.

  10. Delhi turned into a polluted city because of industries and the running cars on roads. We are responsible for this biggest harm.

  11. Sunisha kumari patel

    It’s really a matter of concern.The pollution level is increasing at an alarming rate and if we don’t take a step now to check the level, we would be dragged in midst of heavy smog which has somewhat surrounded the capital city.Therefore this is the responsibility of every individual to contribute snippets to minimize the level.

  12. Its time to realise our mistakes. Basic human need is air which we have contaminated by our activities,now no more purity in air and only suffocation

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