Diwali festivities or ways to turn a city into a gas chamber? High pollution levels in Delhi left the residents literally gasping, along with other problems.
This Diwali turned out to be a nightmare for majority of Delhiites who woke up with a plethora of problems like throat congestion and burning sensation in eyes. It is high time we rethink how we celebrate our festivals.
The day following the night of Diwali was a nightmare for me. Continuous bouts of coughing had taken a toll on my health. There was a thick cloud of smog in my room which made it difficult for me to breathe.
I spoke to my friends the next day. They could empathize with my situation. I switched on the television and realized that what Delhiites celebrated was an apocalyptic Diwali. The whole city will have to bear the brunt of this for the coming weeks.
Delhi’s air pollution levels are eight times higher than the safe limit. Bursting of crackers despite warnings, existing vehicular pollution in the air and sudden drop in temperatures are some factors playing havoc with the city’s air.
Delhi is slowly developing the reputation of being an unlivable city. Many of them are hatching out plans to migrate to different cities where the quality of air is better.
Children, elderly and people suffering from respiratory diseases are at a very high risk. The government is also considering the option of shutting schools to save children from getting exposed to high levels of hazardous gases.
According to a recent report, the deteriorating quality of air is causing irreversible damage to their lungs. They have been advised to stay indoors or wear masks while commuting since there is no ray of hope for things to improve in the near future.
Delhiites commuting to work are blaming smog for poor visibility. The traffic on the road is slow because of which they aren’t able to make it on time. In extreme conditions, parking lights are being used to cover long distances.
Delhi is home to approximately 20 million people who have been breathing a cocktail of poisonous gases for a week. The blame game has already started. The solutions offered are impractical. People are too lazy to pay heed to the warnings issued time and again. Delhi’s inability to control air pollution is definitely affecting its global image and the politicians’ hope of making it a world class city in the future.
Become a premium user on Women’s Web and get access to exclusive content for women, plus useful Women’s Web events and resources in your city.
Image source: the weather network