Breathing in Delhi equal to smoking 20 cigarettes a day, say doctors

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Breathing in Delhi equal to smoking 20 cigarettes a day, say doctors

Sunday, 04 November 2018 | Staff Reporter | NEW DELHI

Delhiites are perhaps facing their worse days in terms of breathing fresh air. As the pollution levels go severe, doctors in the national Capital on Saturday said the effects of pollution in Delhi are equivalent to consuming 15 to 20 cigarettes a day.

“Each winter, Delhi’s air pollution rises to critical levels. We have to act immediately to control this menace otherwise the health consequences will be disastrous. We are already seeing an increasing number of patients in our hospital continuously complain about cough, irritation in throat and nose”, said Dr SP Byotra, Vice-Chairman, Board of Management, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.

According to Dr Arvind Kumar, Founder Trustee, Lung Care Foundation and Chairman of Centre for Chest Surgery, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, the situation in Delhi has gone bad as now even the teenagers are coming with black lungs.

“I’ve seen a change in the colour of lungs over the past 30 years that I’ve been operating. Earlier, I used to see black deposits only in smokers and others would have pink lungs. But, nowadays, I only see black lungs. Even teenagers have black spots on their lungs,” he said.

Amidst this, to show people how bad air turns lungs black, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital along with Jhatkaa, a Bangalore-based organisation and Lung Care Foundation Delhi unveiled a set of humungous lungs at the hospital as a part of their ‘Help Delhi Breathe.’

Saying that the central as well as State Governments have failed the people, Dr Reecha Upadhyay, Campaigns Director, Help Delhi Breathe said, “The impact of air pollution on our health is evident. Yet both the Delhi Government and the Central Government have failed the citizens. As citizens, we need to hold our representatives accountable for the environment.  This election year citizens should say loud and clear: ‘Saans Nahin Toh Vote Nahin.’”

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