Lucknow chokes under a blanket of Smog following Diwali celebrations

Congratulations, Lucknowites! We have once again managed to make Lucknow one of the most polluted cities in the country. With an AQI of 422 following Diwali, the pollution level in the city is extremely alarming due to over zealous Diwali celebrations. Citizens must now brace themselves for a rise in AQI (air quality index), smog and a murky winter.

Indiranagar and Vikasnagar are two of the most highly polluted areas in Lucknow. Indiranagar, has consecutively been ranked as ‘severely polluted’ for the past five years and the latter is catching up fast with the fastest rise in pollution index, according to reports.

The air in Indiranagar has seen a rise in the PM 10 pollutant by a whopping 46 units in the past ten years, while the pollutant has risen by 50 units in Vikasnagar.

According to Indian Institute of Toxicology Reseasrch (IITR) officials, the main reason for growing pollution in Vikasnagar and Indiranagar is the loss of the vast green belt due to the ongoing construction activities. Though development projects in the area are necessary, they must not take a toll on the air quality in its vicinity, the official added.

Residents of all affected areas expressed their displeasure at the same and cited the example of Gomti Nagar and other less polluted areas, saying that since they have more green cover and planned roads the pollution is less rampant. Others have traced the source of the pollution to be rising dust, garbage burning activities near the region and of course, Diwali Celebrations.

Screen shot shared with Knocksense on November 7th

In other regions as well, the air quality has taken a drop. The major reason for this is the celebration of Diwali with a bang. Even after the government’s ruling to ban crackers, it did not have much of and effect on residents who went overboard with celebration and will not lift a finger to help towards the betterment of the city. The major pollutant is seen to be PM 2.5.

The government has taken appropriate measures to curb the pollution but not much can be done while garbage is burnt in the open, unabated construction and the near exponential increase in the number of vehicles. In addition, the only way to change the mindset of people if the government strikes fear in their hearts. We hope to see some improvement in Lucknow before the pollution has a severe effect on the lives of residents.

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