On rising pollution levels in Delhi's air, BJP MP Gautam Gambir on Wednesday said that Delhites should be more concerned about air pollution rather than hosting a cricket match. "It is a far serious issue than having a game of cricket or any other sports matches happens in Delhi. For us I think people living in Delhi should be more concerned about the pollution levels rather than the cricket match that happens," Gambhir said. "Not only athletes it's also for the common man of Delhi as well. A match is a very small thing, I think we can say ok whether we want to shift the match or not," he added.
Despite the alarming pollution level, Delhi's Arun Jaitley Stadium will host the first T20I between India and Bangladesh on November 3. "That is a very small thing, ultimately its the entire Delhi which is suffering, from kids to old age people as well, so it's our responsibility. I got to know that pollution is still better but a lot of credit goes to the people of Delhi but hard work still needs to made by Delhites," the cricketer-turned-politician said.
"So, I am not really bothered whether the match will happen or not. I hope it happens and it should happen, but again it's the thing which is throughout the year that Delhi people face. It is far more concerning than match (sic)," he added. When asked about what Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) should plan when it comes to deciding match venue, Gambhir said, "Probably yes, probably you want to play in an environment which is suitable for everyone and players as well. If the pollution levels are really high then obviously you can think of having an alternate venue but for me, as I just maintained and what I have just said."
Gautam Gambhir also credited Delhites for pollution levels much better than the past six years on Diwali."It's been better since the last six years and probably this is the least level of pollution we have after Diwali. I think credit needs to go to the people of Delhi but still a lot of efforts need to be made." Gambhir said. "Obviously the Delhi government is claiming that they have done a lot of work but ultimately its people of Delhi who had that awareness not to burn crackers but a lot of efforts have to be done rather than all this gimmick of advertisement and taking credit of what people of Delhi have done," he added.
Gambhir also added that the government should create awareness for curbing the high air pollution level. "I think we should still try and create as much awareness as we can and get the pollution levels down because it's still in a very poor category so I feel a lot of efforts need to be made," Gambhir said. He also said that for him, the most important steps to prevent pollution is working on the ground level.
"I feel the central government is very serious in getting the pollution level down and plus stubble burning needs to be curbed as well. So, I think the central government is doing all the best what they can to curb down the pollution level but I think and feel Delhi government still needs to pull up their socks," he added.
(With ANI inputs)