Air pollution led to 54k premature deaths in Delhi in 2020: Study - The Daily Guardian
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Air pollution led to 54k premature deaths in Delhi in 2020: Study

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Air pollution caused an estimated 54,000 premature deaths in the national capital last year, a higher toll than in any other big global metropolis, news agency Reuters quoted a study as saying.

The study by Greenpeace Southeast Asia Analysis and Swiss firm IQAir measured air quality by recording the concentration of poisonous PM2.5 particles, which are less than 2.5 microns in diameter and can cause deadly diseases, including cancer and cardiac problems.

Last year they also made people more susceptible to coronavirus infection, according to the study.

In Delhi, the PM2.5 reading peaked in November when it was 30 times above the World Health Organization’s safe limit, the study showed, in line with the Indian government’s air quality index reading at the time.

On the number of deaths caused, there was no comparison with 2019. However, 1.67 million lives were lost in India as a whole in 2019 due to toxic air, according to The Lancet.

“Polluted air increases the likelihood of deaths due to cancer and stroke, spikes in asthma attacks and worsens severity of Covid-19 symptoms,” Avinash Chanchal, Climate Campaigner, Greenpeace India, was quoted as saying in the report by Reuters.

Delhi’s annual PM2.5 average reading in 2020 was almost six times above the WHO’s safe limit, the report said.

Pollution also led to around 25,000 premature deaths in India’s financial hub Mumbai in 2020, according to the report.

“The need of the hour is to rapidly scale up renewable energy, bring an end to fossil fuel emissions and boost sustainable and accessible transport systems,” the report said, referring to big cities around the world including in India.

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MP Police held two persons for thrashing man, making video

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Indore (Madhya Pradesh) [India], March 1 (ANI): Two persons arrested in Indore district of Madhya Pradesh after a video of them thrashing a man allegedly for asking their borrowed money back went viral.
“We have arrested two of the five accused as per the video. They demanded money from the victim’s friend and father by sharing the video,” said police on Sunday.
Detailing it further, the police said: “The victim had borrowed some money from the three accused. When he failed to return the amount, all the three accused along with their two fellows had beaten him on February 23 and made a video. After that they have forward it to their friends and father.”
A case has been registered and further investigation is underway. (ANI)

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Man arrested for sexual assault of actress in Mumbai

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Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], March 1 (ANI): One person arrested for allegedly saxually harassing an actress in Maharashtra’s Mumbai, police said on Sunday.
According to the police, “A person has been arrested on allegations of sexual exploitation with the actress. A case has registered under relevant Sections of Indian Panel Court at the Goregaon police station.”
Further investigation is underway.
Earlier on February 27, three persons have been arrested on the basis of a complaint by a few girls who had approached police alleging that the accused touched them inappropriately at public places while shooting videos.
The girls said the accused pranked them to shoot the videos, which they later uploaded on Facebook and YouTube.
“Mumbai police arrested the three after cyber cell received a complaint that they made videos of girls while touching them inappropriately at public places and uploaded them on social media. Indecent language has been used in the videos. They earned around Rs 2 crore from these videos,” Mumbai Police said earlier. (ANI)

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Minister Arjun Munda felicitates Indian para archery team for performing at Fazza tournament in Dubai

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New Delhi [India], March 1 (ANI): Union Minister and President of Archery Association of India, Arjun Munda on Sunday felicitated the Indian Para archery team for their performance at the seventh Fazza World Ranking Tournament which was held in Dubai.
“I am glad to see the performance of our archers in Dubai. They have inspired us with their performance in Olympics and showed their will-power,” said the Union Minister while talking to ANI.
Munda further said: “When a player achieves something it is a matter of pride for the nation. Their achievement will motivate other players to take part in games.”

Harvinder Singh, a para archer hailing from Haryana said: “It was a very challenging experience due to the COVID-19 pandemic because we were not able to practice in that period. Fazza tournament was our first championship after the pandemic. Earlier in October 2019, We played the Asian championship in Thailand.”
While Rakesh Kumar another para archer who met with an accident in 2009 and became wheelchair-ridden won a gold medal in the individual category in the tournament said: “I met with an accident in 2009 and from there, my life changed. It was very tough for me to live a normal life. I was on bed for at least six months but after three or four years, when I recovered I realised that now I can’t move on my legs. So, I had to do something and my family’s financial condition was also not good,” Rakesh said. (ANI)

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India has multiple cultures, language; PM must respect all: Rahul Gandhi

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Tirunelveli (Tamil Nadu) [India], March 1 (ANI): Refuting Prime Minister Narendra Mondi’s claim that India has one culture, history and language, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday said the country has multiple cultures, history, and languages and urged Prime Minister to respect all of it.
“Prime Minister says India has one culture, one history and one language. Is Tamil history not Indian history or Tamil culture not Indian culture? India has multiple cultures, history and languages. Prime Minister must respect every language and culture,” Rahul said while addressing a rally in Tirunelveli.
Gandhi is touring poll-bound Tamil Nadu for the second day as part of his campaign for the April 6 assembly elections.
He also took to Twitter to slam the Central government. “GOI has turned noble professions like farming, education and healthcare into financial commodities for the benefit of a few cronies. We are fighting this without any anger, hatred or violence. And non-violence always wins,” he tweeted.
This comes ahead of the 234-member Tamil Nadu assembly elections will be held in a single phase on April 6 and the counting of votes will take place on May 2.
The ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) is contesting the polls in a pre-poll alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). MK Stalin’s Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) has joined hands with the Congress party.
Actor-turned-politician Kamal Hassan’s party Makkal Neethi Maiam (MNM) is also in the fray this time. (ANI

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Darjeeling MP asks justice for West Bengal BJP worker’s mother

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Darjeeling (West Bengal) [India], March 1 (ANI): Raju Bista, Member of Parliament from Darjeeling wrote to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee requesting her for immediate intervention to ensure justice for BJP worker Gopal Majumdar’s mother.
“Those who have perpetrated such barbarity need to be dealt with in the most strictest of terms,” he wrote.
A Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) worker in the state has alleged that workers of the Trinamool Congress (TMC) attacked his mother in North 24 Paraganas on February 27, in what appears to be another case of political violence in the poll-bound state.
BJP worker Gopal Majumdar said that three TMC workers entered his house and attacked his mother in Nimta.
Talking about the assault, Majumdar’s mother said: “They hit me on my head and neck and punched me. They hit me on my face too. I am scared, they asked me not to tell anyone about it. My whole body is in pain.”
An FIR has been registered in the case.
Political violence has been regularly making headlines in poll-bound West Bengal. The elections for the 294 Assembly seats in West Bengal will begin on March 27. The state is going to witness eight-phase Assembly polls this year. (ANI)

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Kerala Finance Minister criticises Nirmala Sitharaman over her state Budget, KIIFB remarks

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Kochi (Kerala) [India], March 1 (ANI): Reacting to Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s comment over Kerala Budget and Kerala infrastructure investment fund board (KIIFB), state Finance Minister TM Thomas Issac on Sunday said she should have realized that the dignity of the position eroded when she delivers such speech without understanding.
Thomas Issac wrote a Facebook post after Sitharaman in Kochi alleged the Pinarayi Vijayan-led government in Kerala of giving all the budget money to KIIFB.
“Union Minister Nirmala Sitharaman should have realized that the dignity of the position she holds is being eroded when she automatically reads (without understanding) what someone has written. She was talking nonsense about KIIFB and the state budget. Not only did she not do her homework at all, but her remarks proved that she had no idea what was being said. The Union Minister should not regret for which I am saying openly that Shame on You,” Issac wrote on Facebook.
State Finance Minister also described KIIFB and said it is a system set up to mobilize resources outside the budget.
“KIIFB is a system set up to mobilize resources outside the budget. The CAG’s criticism was that KIIFB revenue and expenditure were not part of the budget. When the criticism reached Nirmala Sitharaman, that came to the fore. All I can say is that no matter who wrote this speech, the Union Finance Minister should not have been fooled like this. A quality and serious approach is expected from that position,” he said.
Union Finance Minister yesterday lashed out at Kerala government over the state budget and accused it for giving all the budget money to KIIFB.
“Kerala budget was presented and all the money is given to KIIFB. I do not know what budget they are making if all the money is given to one organisation,” the Finance Minister said during ‘Vijaya Yathra’ in Kochi. (ANI)

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