Varanasi: Third Most Polluted City In The World

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“A city with some of the planet’s most toxic air, Varanasi has done very little to curb air pollution and most plans to clean its air “remain on paper”

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Varanasi, known for its heritage, has been hitting the headlines for another reason: its growing air pollution

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Varanasi is dealing with extreme air pollution which has led to public health emergency in the city

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In 2016, a report was released by Indiaspend, CEED and Care4Air called ‘Varanasi Chokes’ exploring the status of air pollution in the Varanasi

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The report says out of the 227 days for which the Air Quality Measurements were taken in 2015, the city reported ‘Zero’ good air days

The manual air quality stations in Varanasi also revealed significant gaps in PM10 values being recorded

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A Lancet study even mentions that Uttar Pradesh recorded the most amount of deaths attributed to air pollution in 2017,with more than 260,000 lives lost

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Also, according to a 2018 report by WHO, PM Modi’s constituency ranked 3rd in a list of world’s most polluted cities

Even though various steps have been taken to curb pollution like NCAP, no big change has been seen as such.

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Between November 2018 and February 2019, various organizations filed RTIs with 10 city departments in Varanasi tasked with curbing air pollution

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The Nagar nigam has taken “some steps” towards reducing road dust and curbing roadside burning of garbage

However, no details were provided about instances and nature of violations

The traffic police said their mandate was to manage the traffic, and they did not mention violations on air pollution laws by vehicles, suggesting “monitoring and implementation gaps”

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The forest department and the development authority in Varanasi have planted trees, which reduce the effects of air pollution, but many were cut for infrastructure-development projects, suggesting there may be no net increase

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The UPPCB suggested that there were no brick kilns in municipal limits. However, the District Council said there might be some in “peri-urban areas”

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“Varanasi is one of the most polluted cities on the planet. Still there is only one monitoring station. While in the last few years the government has done amazing work on the beautification of the city and solar…

Image Source: muslim mirror’s time to make air pollution a serious priority as well”, said Tamseel Hussain, Founder of Let Me Breathe

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