LifestyleExperts warn. That an Asian country resembles a gas chamber

Experts warn. That an Asian country resembles a gas chamber

Experts recommend residents of India to wear protective masks.
Experts recommend residents of India to wear protective masks.
Images source: © Getty Images | Mayank Makhija/NurPhoto
ed. NGU

7:12 PM EDT, November 3, 2023

Due to lower temperatures, sluggish winds, and smoke from the burning stubble, air pollution has dramatically increased in India's capital. Dr. Sandeep Nayar describes the circumstances as akin to living in a gas chamber, resulting in eye irritation and a sore throat for anyone venturing outdoors.

The state of affairs in New Delhi is becoming incredibly hazardous. In recent days, the city's AQI (Air Quality Index), a measure of air pollution levels, has nearly surpassed the World Health Organization's (WHO) guidelines by a hundredfold.

Grim News from India

An AQI value of 0 to 50 indicates good air quality, while ratings between 400 and 500 suggest severe negative effects on humans, posing a significant threat. Given Delhi's AQI has recently hovered around 480, schools in the city have been closed, and non-essential construction work has been ceased. Surprisingly, educational establishments in the capital's suburbs, where some readings have reached a lethal 800, remain open.

According to Dr. Sandeep Nayar, quoted by the Mint portal, the poisonous air, when inhaled, affects every organ in the body. He recommends, "People should cover up and wear masks when going out. It's important to follow a healthy diet and stay hydrated."

India Suffers Worst Air Quality in a Long Time

The root causes of poor air quality include lower temperatures, weak winds, and smoke from burnt stubble. Farmers from the northern states of Punjab, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh traditionally burn crop residues in October, to prepare fields for the sowing of winter crops. Ashwani Kumar, chairman of the Pollution Control Commission in Delhi, expects "This level of pollution will continue for the next two to three weeks." He also emphasized that the pollution level in October this year in India's capital has been the worst since 2020.

Authorities in the capital have instructed for more frequent mechanical street sweeping, daily water sprinkling with dust-suppressants, and increased subway service frequencies, to urge people to use public transport. Local media reports highlight that the air quality crisis is not exclusive to Delhi, as several cities in neighboring Haryana, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh are also experiencing perilous air quality.

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