Hundreds of joggers at Gandhi Maidan demand their right for Healthy Air

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CEED initiated programmes to spread awareness about air pollution in Patna

On 18th November, 2017, at the crack of dawn, CEED organized an activity at Patna’s Gandhi Maidan to raise awareness on the issue of air pollution among joggers. Hundreds of these joggers demanded measures to address the rising air pollution in the city, and also urged their fellow Patnaites to get involved and play a role in improving the current air quality of Patna. They also signed petitions in the form of messages on postcards addressed to the Bihar Government. The activity started as part of a citizen initiative against air pollution, dubbed as ‘Patna for Healthy Air’. It aims to create public awareness about the depleting air quality in the city and mobilize support for collective action for clean air.

Highlighting the gravity of the situation, Ankita Jyoti, Senior Programme Officer, at CEED said, “Patna is among the most polluted cities in India and the state government must work on war footing basis to tackle the issue of air pollution. The government should come up with a clean air action plan and should also issue a health advisory. The air quality is particularly poor during early hours of the day. So, I request the citizens of Patna to minimize any strenuous outdoor activity early in the morning and use masks during high air pollution days.”

Talking to the CEED team about the deteriorating air quality, one of the joggers at the venue, Mr. Arvind Gupta said, “I had been advised by my doctor to go for a walk in the morning everyday in 1998, and since then I have been following this routine religiously. But owing to the current levels of air pollution in the city and the fact that pollution remains high in the morning, I feel worried about its adverse effects on my health and well being.”

Air pollution has hit dangerous levels in Patna, resulting in serious public health implications. Consequently, CEED urged the Bihar Government to formulate a Clean Air Action Plan in a time bound manner, and also showed their willingness to work with and support the government in the fight against air pollution.