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India has 14 of the top 20 polluted cities in the world

Author Name : Shivansh Arora     |     Date : 27-06-2023
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India has recently found itself in the news again for yet another dispiriting reason. A report by the World Health Organisation has revealed that out of the top 20 most polluted cities in the world, 14 are located in India. The revelation comes as no small shock to anyone who has paid attention to the air quality crisis that has been plaguing the country for years now.

The report focused on levels of PM2.5, a dangerous form of particulate matter that is known to cause respiratory problems and other health complications. The data, which was collected in 2016, painted a bleak picture of India's air quality, with Delhi, Varanasi, Kanpur, and Faridabad all occupying spots in the top five most polluted cities in the world.

What's even more alarming is that not much has changed since then. In fact, according to the Swiss air quality technology company IQ Air, 15 Indian cities are still among the top 20 most polluted cities in the world. This is a concerning trend that cannot be ignored. Air pollution is a serious problem that has far-reaching consequences. It impacts public health, the environment, and the economy. In India, air pollution is responsible for the deaths of an estimated 1.25 million people every year, according to a study by Lancet Planetary Health. This number is higher than the deaths caused by smoking, tuberculosis, and HIV/AIDS combined.

The situation in India is particularly alarming because the country's most populous cities are also the most polluted. These cities have high levels of traffic congestion, industrial pollution, and construction dust, all of which contribute to the worsening air quality. Lack of awareness about the air quality crisis and ineffective government policies have failed to alleviate the problem. It's high time for India to take action against this menace. The government needs to implement stricter regulations on industrial emissions and vehicular traffic. Public transportation should be improved and incentivized to reduce the number of cars on the road. Citizens must also be educated about the impact of air pollution on their health and urged to take action to reduce their own carbon footprints.

It's not just about saving the environment or meeting international climate targets. It's about the lives and health of millions of people who are suffering due to the country's poor air quality.