New Delhi – AFP, Reuters
The Indian capital has closed schools and coal mines as it battles a dangerous cloud of pollution in a region suffocating residents of neighboring Pakistan’s Lahore, doctors say: The Indian capital, New Delhi, has long been prone to outbreaks of chronic chest diseases, including asthma, among children. May affect their cognitive development.
Air quality has deteriorated sharply in recent years in northern India and neighboring Pakistan; Every winter, a dangerous mixture of factory and car emissions and fire fumes form in its sky. On Wednesday, Swiss air quality system iQ-air, with a population of over 11 million, located in Lahore, near the border with India, ranked it as the most polluted city in the world.
Due to factories, traffic jams and fires burning for agricultural purposes every winter, New Delhi has long been the most polluted capital in the world. It is now seen to be covered by dense fog of pollution. The Air Quality Commission in Delhi on Tuesday evening announced that it would close educational institutions until further notice. On Saturday, the New Delhi Municipality ordered the closure of schools for a week and halted construction work for four days.
According to the decision, heavy trucks will be barred from entering the capital until November 21, except for those carrying basic supplies, and most construction workshops will be closed. Of the 11 thermal power plants located within a radius of 300 km, 6 thermal power plants were asked to suspend their operations until further notice.
The panel said at least half of government employees would have to work from home, and that employees in the private sector would also be invited to work remotely.
The move comes 24 hours after the Delhi government decided to “oppose the Supreme Court’s call to impose a lockout due to pollution”.
The government said in the Supreme Court that industry was the main cause of pollution, followed by dust and emissions from roads and construction sites.
According to the medical journal The Lancet, about 17,500 people will die from air pollution in Delhi by 2020.
“We will die”
In Lahore, the rate of PM 2.5 particles on Wednesday morning reached 348 micrograms per cubic meter of air, which is 23 times higher than the limit set by the World Health Organization.
“Children are suffering from respiratory diseases and for God’s sake they have found a solution,” farm worker Mohammad Saeed told officials. For many years, smog in Pakistan reached dangerous levels until October each year. Like its neighbor India, low temperatures, along with weak winds, cause pollution to fall to the ground.
In recent years, Lahore residents have developed their own air purifiers and sued government officials. However, officials did not rush in, blaming India for the air pollution and saying the numbers were exaggerated. Lahore continues to be one of the worst air quality cities in the world.
Commenting on this, businessman Iqram Ahmed said: We are poor and unable to pay even for a medical examination. “We can only appeal (to the authorities) to control the pollution,” he added. I am not educated, but the air quality in Lahore is poor and I have read that it is New Delhi following. If this continues we will die.
The disease will increase
Doctors say air pollution in the Indian capital, New Delhi, has led to an increase in chronic chest diseases, including asthma, among children.
The sharp rise in respiratory infections among children in New Delhi has caused concern among doctors and parents.
Arvind Bundra, head of the pediatric department at Max Super Specialty Hospital, said the number of children suffering from respiratory illnesses had tripled seven to ten days ago.
“It is directly related to high levels of pollution in Delhi and surrounding cities,” Bundra added. Long-term exposure to contaminants, including lead, can cause very serious problems. “There is a study showing that the cognitive functions of the brain (in children) are also damaged by these particles,” Bandra said.
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