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Congress to launch programme to fight air pollution


New Delhi: Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday said the party will launch a national programme to combat air pollution, as increasing air pollution levels has become a major factor contributing to rising cases of public health emergencies.

Rahul in a Facebook post announced that the party will launch "National Clean Air Programme" to combat the menace of air pollution in the country.

A number of reports have stated that air pollution has been increasing exponentially in many cities in the country, with Delhi being cited as the world's most polluted capital city.

In March 2019, Greenpeace in its report on air pollution highlighted that out of 20 most polluted cities in the world, 18 are in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, while Beijing, once among the most polluted cities in the world, ranked 122nd in the list of most polluted cities in 2018.

The report claimed that India still hosts 15 out of 20 most polluted cities in the world, with Gurugram and Ghaziabad being the most polluted cities in the world, followed by Faridabad, Bhiwadi and Noida in the top six and Delhi on the 11th spot.

Another study released on Wednesday, titled "State of Global Air 2019", reported that the life of on average of a South Asian child growing up in current high levels of air pollution will be shortened by two years and six months, while the global life expectancy loss is 20 months.

The study is produced annually by the US-based Health Effect Institute (HEI) and the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME).

Senior Congress leader Ajay Maken said: "Congress introduced CNG in Delhi, which replaced diesel vehicles in public and private transport, and helped reduced air pollution to a great extent. The party is determined to combat air pollution."

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