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Bihar Tops the Charts for Most Polluted Cities in East India

12:35 PM May 02, 2023 IST | Ground report
bihar tops the charts for most polluted cities in east india

It’s true that Biharis are known for their outstanding performance in various competitive exams, including the UPSC. However, when it comes to facing the challenge of tackling air pollution in their state, the story is a little different.

India has been grappling with air pollution for decades now, and the latest data released by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) shows that the situation has only worsened. As per the data, the top 20 most polluted cities of East India are located in Bihar, with Gaya topping the charts. The other cities on the list include Patna, Muzaffarpur, Bhagalpur, and Katihar, to name a few.


Analysis of the CPCB data on air pollution in Bihar

The situation in Bihar is alarming, to say the least. The CPCB data reveals that Gaya is the most polluted city in East India, with an Air Quality Index (AQI) of 413, classified as ‘severe.’ Patna, the capital city of Bihar, is not far behind, with an AQI of 373, also classified as ‘severe.’ The other cities on the list include Muzaffarpur, Bhagalpur, Katihar, and other urban areas in the state.

The high levels of pollutants in the air in Bihar can be attributed to several factors. Vehicular emissions, industrial pollution, construction activities, and agricultural practices are some of the primary contributors to air pollution in the state.


Health hazards of air pollution

Air pollution is a significant health hazard, and high levels of pollutants in the air can lead to respiratory and cardiovascular diseases. It can also cause premature death. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that air pollution is responsible for seven million premature deaths worldwide every year.


The government has been taking several measures to tackle air pollution, but the situation seems to be getting worse. The CPCB has directed the state governments to take strict action against industries that are violating pollution norms. The government has also implemented the odd-even scheme, which restricts the use of private vehicles on alternate days based on the last digit of their registration number.

However, these measures have not been enough to curb the rising levels of air pollution. The need of the hour is to take more aggressive and sustainable steps to tackle the problem. This includes promoting the use of clean energy, such as solar and wind power, and reducing the dependence on fossil fuels.


In a recent interview, Dr. M. P. George, Director of the Centre for Science and Environment, emphasized the need for collaborative efforts to address the issue of air pollution. He said,

‘We need to move towards a comprehensive strategy to deal with air pollution, which involves various stakeholders. This includes the government, civil society organizations, and individuals. We need to work together to reduce air pollution levels and ensure that everyone can breathe clean and healthy air.’

The high levels of air pollution in Bihar are a cause for concern, and urgent action needs to be taken to address the problem. The government, civil society organizations, and individuals must work together to reduce the levels of pollutants in the air. And, ensure that everyone can breathe clean and healthy air.

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