It was just yesterday that we gave you an insight into a damning WHO report that stated that Delhi was the most polluted city on the planet.
Today, we take you a touch deeper into the report to look at two other Indian cities that have found a place in the top four.
When it comes to air pollution, both Gwalior and Raipur are absolute nightmares according the latest WHO findings.
The study of 1,600 cities across 91 countries found that air pollution worsened since 2011 significantly in under-developed and developing nations globally.
Much of Gwalior’s pollution problem comes from its vehicular emissions and the construction sector that is booming in the city. Raipur seems to have a similar problem with three times the acceptable particulate matter levels in air.
Obviously the authorities at Gwalior are in their typical denial mode and are dishing out a variety of excuses to try and convince people that all is still well.
This is what Gwalior district collector P Narhari had to say when he was asked about the escalating air pollution situation:
“WHO report doesn’t take into account ground realities. City is expanding and so are plantations. Pollution norms pertaining to vehicles are being strictly followed.
Also, we don’t even have any polluting industries in the region.”
This attitude of passing the buck and doing the bare minimum seems to continue down the line of bureaucracy. Gwalior’s regional transport officer (RTO) H K Singh said, “So far, we didn’t have any laboratory to test samples. Action was taken on basis of personal experiences of identifying adulteration.”
Basically stating that unless there is a pretty specific complaint those selling adulterated fuel might still get away under the radar.
One can only hope that greater citizen awareness in cities across India and world will push authorities to take more stringent measures.