NEW DELHI — The World Health Organisation (WHO) global air pollution database released in Geneva early Wednesday morning reveals that India has 14 out of the 20 most polluted cities in the world in terms of PM 2.5 concentrations, with the worst being Kanpur.
Greater Cairo in Egypt is the second most polluted city, followed by the Bangladesh capital, Dhaka. Beijing ranks fifth.
Other Indian cities that registered very high levels of PM2.5 pollutants are New Delhi, Faridabad, Gaya, Patna, Agra, Muzaffarpur, Srinagar, Gurgaon, Jaipur, Patiala and Jodhpur followed by Ali Subah Al-Salem in Kuwait and a few cities in China and Mongolia.
The WHO data also said that nine out of 10 people in the world breathe air containing high levels of pollutants. Globally, ambient air pollution caused by industries, cars and trucks, among others, caused 4.2 million deaths and indoor pollution caused 3.8 million deaths in 2016.
The report said, “While the latest data shows ambient air pollution levels are still dangerously high in most parts of the world, countries also show some positive progress.”
An analysis of particulate matter in the air showed about 90% of people across the world are exposed to bad air, which was linked to 7 million deaths in 2016, WHO found.
The analysis shows many smaller towns and cities in India also report pollution levels comparable to Delhi; the sheer population of Delhi, home to over 17 million people, compounds the health impact of air pollution.
Delhi consistently features in the list of most polluted cities globally and mitigation measures have tended to focus on the capital although other, smaller cities too confront toxic levels of pollution.
19 killed in Islamist militant attack on Nigerian village
MAIDUGURI— At least 19 people have been killed in an Islamist militant attack on a village in northeast Nigeria, a survivor of the attack said.
The militants attacked the village of Mailari in the Guzamala region of Borno state at around 2 am Sunday, according to the survivor, Abatcha Umar.
The strike is the latest blow to Nigeria’s efforts to defeat insurgencies by the Nigerian Islamist Boko Haram group and Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA).
Umar said he had counted 19 people killed. However,an aid worker at a camp that received the survivors, and who declined to be identified, put the death toll at 63.
The Islamist militants had been spotted around the village three days before their attack, said Umar. Locals had warned Nigerian troops stationed in the nearby town of Gudumbali, but no action was taken, he said.
In recent months, the military has suffered its heaviest defeats in years, commanders have been repeatedly replaced, and special forces soldiers have mutinied.Follow @gorkhapost