73% of the Household in the Delhi-NCR Region is Suffering from Pollution Related Ailment
As Delhi faces another tryst with air pollution, about 73 per cent households of Delhi-NCR now have one or more individuals suffering from pollution-related ailments like cough, cold, sore throat, headache, burning eyes and difficulty in breathing,
As Delhi faces another tryst with air pollution, about 73 per cent households of Delhi-NCR now have one or more individuals suffering from pollution-related ailments like cough, cold, sore throat, headache, burning eyes and difficulty in breathing, a survey revealed on Tuesday.
The national capital has been recording severe category air quality since the last six days. Delhi's air quality index stood at 467 micrograms per cubic metre at 6 p.m., almost touching the hazardous category.
According to the public health experts, smog-related health hazards such as cough, cold, sore throat, burning eyes and difficulty in breathing can lead to short-and long-term ailments such as aggravating respiratory and cardiovascular problems, and even lung cancer.
'LocalCircles' conducted a survey to find the aggregate percentage of households in Delhi-NCR having one or more individuals facing pollution-related health ailments. The first question asked citizens, "With Delhi-NCR air quality having deteriorated by 1,000% in the last 6 weeks and AQI now in the 500-700 range, what are you and your family experiencing?."
About 5,965 responses from Delhi, 1,544 from Gurugram, 1,514 from Noida, 1,357 from Ghaziabad and 1,441 from Faridabad were received. Of which, 85 per cent households in Delhi, 62 per cent in Gurugram, 68 per cent in Noida, 43 per cent in Ghaziabad, and 66 per cent in Faridabad said "either 1 or more individuals are suffering from pollution-related ailments".
Meanwhile, only 13 per cent households in Delhi, 13 per cent in Gurugram, 19 per cent in Noida, 19 per cent in Ghaziabad, and 17 per cent in Faridabad said "no members of the family have any of the above and are doing fine".
The aggregate views of citizens suggest that 73 per cent households of Delhi-NCR now have one or more individuals suffering from pollution-related ailments like cough, cold, sore throat, headache, burning eyes, and difficulty in breathing.
Delhi has reported the highest number of one or more individuals in the household facing pollution-related ailments, followed by Noida, Faridabad, Ghaziabad and Gurugram.
On October 15, 2020, LocalCircles published the findings of a survey that said 65 per cent households in Delhi have one or more individuals who have started experiencing pollution-related ailments.
The second question in the survey has tried to understand the perception of Delhi-NCR citizens if they'd socialise during Diwali. Residents of Delhi and NCR typically meet their friends and extended family before and after Diwali. Many Diwali parties also take place during this period.
To the second question that asked citizens, "With Delhi-NCR AQI now in the 500-700 range and Covid-19 daily cases load near 7,000, how do you plan to socialise this Diwali?", 5,908 responses from Delhi, 1,364 from Gurugram, 1,449 from Noida, 2,650 from Ghaziabad, and 1,318 from Faridabad were received.
Of which, only 22 per cent of respondents from Delhi, 20 per cent from Gurugram, 25 per cent from Noida, 22 per cent from Ghaziabad, and 50 per cent from Faridabad said "will socialise" this Diwali.
The aggregate views of citizens suggest that only 25 per cent of residents of Delhi-NCR will socialise this Diwali given the double-threat posed by air pollution and the likelihood of getting infected with Covid-19 on the present air quality conditions.
This is a positive sentiment among the respondents from Delhi-NCR as the majority have planned to lesser their social visit come Diwali, or would just stay home and celebrate the occasion with close family and not visit nor host any gathering.
Meanwhile, the NGT earlier this week has banned all kinds of firecrackers between November 7 and 30 in cities with "poor" or worse air quality across the country, aimed to reduce pollution levels during the festive season.
Celebration comes with planning and that requires shopping. Given the AQI and Covid-19 daily caseload, the survey tried to understand citizens' plans if they'd visit the local market, main market, mall for festive shopping, or would they opt for home delivery from retail or local stores, or shop online for Diwali celebrations.
To the question that asked, "With Delhi-NCR AQI now in the 500-700 range and Covid-19 daily caseload near 7,000, how do you plan to do festive shopping between now and Diwali?", 5,560 responses from Delhi, 1,411 from Gurugram, 1,639 from Noida, 1,273 from Ghaziabad, and 1,314 from Faridabad were received.
Of which, 29 per cent of residents in Delhi, 43 per cent in Gurugram, 22 per cent in Noida, 44 per cent in Ghaziabad, and 66 per cent in Faridabad have said to "visit markets and malls for Diwali shopping".
The aggregate views of citizens suggest that 36 per cent residents of Delhi-NCR plan to visit markets and malls for Diwali shopping. Last weekend, many of the main markets saw over-crowding situations with no social distancing and near zero enforcement to Covid-19 protocols.
With Covid-19 caseload worsening and AQI levels further deteriorating, over-crowded main markets can be extremely risky.