Around 3,000 Gurugram residents, on Sunday, gathered at Leisure Valley in sector 29 to express their concern and demand their right to clean air. During the meet, several school students and residents raised their voices against the hazardous air in the city which is worsening by the day. Different communities of Gurgaon, right from corporates to doctors, school kids, autorickshaw drivers, gardeners, street vendors, and security guards gathered and stood in solidarity.
Adding to the perspective, doctors from hospitals like Max and Fortis came forward and talked about the extreme health implications of bad air. NGOs and civic society groups such as Citizens for Clean Air, I Am Gurgaon, Let's Walk Gurgaon, Gurgaon Moms, Gurgaon First, Gurgaon Community Circle, Why Waste Your Waste, Garbage Free India, Literacy India and NASSCOM Haryana along with corporates including Nagarro, Make My Trip, IBM, Genpact, Sapient, Egon Zhender, Vivtera and Bata among others also participated in the campaign.
While speaking about the issue, CEO of Nagarro, Manas Fuloria said, “Nagarro employs 5000 people in Gurugram, and NASSCOM companies employ maybe 100 times this number here and form the main engine of the economy. And on behalf of NASSCOM Haryana, I can state that we are suffering greatly on account of this air pollution. Our people are unwell, they are frustrated, they are leaving for other cities and countries. And our international clients are nervous. They are cancelling their trips to India. Instead of Gurgaon coming across as the Millennium City of India, it is coming across as a dystopian apocalyptic city.”
In addition to that, Pawan Tayla of Art of Living said, “It was absolutely heartwarming to see the citizens of Gurugram from all walks of life, children, street vendors, corporates, schools, doctors, NGOs voicing their rallying cry for clean air and clean breath. Gurugram Rocks! संघर्ष स्वच्छ हवा का, संघर्ष स्वच्छ भारत का”
Giving out a medical perspective to the situation, Dr Parul Sharma, Director of the Ophthalmology department at Max Hospital said, “Air pollution is a national health emergency as this alarming air quality affects all organs of the bodies. Pregnant mothers, children and the elderly are most susceptible especially if they are already dealing with any other disease. As healthcare professionals we want central and state governments to take this as the topmost priority, form a separate rapid action task force and ensure immediate implementation of preventive measures to curb pollution”.
It was also decided in the meeting that a letter on behalf of Gurugram residents will be submitted to the Government. The letter will comprise of their demands for clean air, enforcement of laws against waste burning and sustainable transport.