Delhi is a tourists’ paradise. But in the light of certain recent, well, occurrences, visitors are advised to take all they hear with a pinch of salt.
Namaste! Looking for a quick getaway from the commotion, dullness and haze of daily life? Well, Delhi is the place to be!
A vibrant symbol of India’s glorious past and dynamic present, our city is home to a plethora of heritage sites, parks, museums and party hubs. You could take a walk past the magnificent India Gate, relish century-old delicacies in the streets of Old Delhi and experience serenity at the Lotus Temple, even as you breathe in a bit of Delhi’s air, filtered perfectly through the N99 mask (available at all airports, toll plazas and railway stations) provided to you, as a humble gift from our side.Why the mask, you ask?
Well, we might have a small (really, really small) problem on our hands. Delhi’s air seems to have become a little polluted lately. Not a lot, though, but studies put the level at around 16-17 times the safety mark. But who cares about such sciencey stuff—fear-mongering is all it is! And we’re not alone- why, we’re only the 11th most polluted city in the world (yay!).
Delhi is a city committed to its citizens and tourists. Why, at the levels of particulate matter in our city on a daily basis, cities like Beijing go on lockdown—they close schools, offices and factories and even restrict vehicles from plying. Now who does that! We are devoted to ensuring the best for our people, so the city remains open and work is done as on any other day—that is how a responsible city works.
And the pollution isn’t our fault! It’s the crop-burning in Punjab and Haryana and the many trucks carrying dust from god-knows-where and the cars from all around the country and the industry in our neighbouring states and the bad monsoon that are to blame. We Dilliwalas care about the environment! Fine, vehicles have doubled in the past decade and power plants emit a bit of smoke and garbage-burning is prevalent, but that’s all! How much can it affect Delhi’s air?
And nobody complains. Do you think there’s a single clean-air protester at Jantar Mantar? No! There are none, for our people know they are safe—what can a little smog do to your health? A (clearly, biased) estimation is that it’s like smoking 40 cigarettes—can you believe it, complete drivel! (And what harm can a smoke or two do?) They say the city has begun to resemble a gas chamber—be assured, a faint resemblance is all it is.
Do you think there’s a single clean-air protester at Jantar Mantar? No! There are none, for our people know they are safe—what can a little smog do to your health?
So, we invite you to Delhi, the city of culture, heritage and beautiful (grey) backgrounds. We hope you enjoy all your visits here (don’t forget to retain the mask!).
Also published at HuffPost India.