New Delhi, Nov 15 (PTI) Former environment minister and Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Wednesday expressed concern over rising pollution levels outside the national capital and alleged there was a huge gap between awareness on public health and pollution beyond metros.
He also claimed that the Siberian cranes which used to arrive in the Keoladeo National Park in Bharatpur during winter months, "no longer come as they have become a casualty to geopolitics".
Ramesh said the over 7,000-acre Keoladeo National Park, which welcomes over 350 species of birds including from abroad during the winters, owes everything to two persons - "Salim Ali and Indira Gandhi as I have described in detail in my book, 'Indira Gandhi: A Life in Nature'." Incidentally, the Instrument of Accession signed by the-then Maharaja of Bharatpur in August 1947 protected his shooting rights which were exercised liberally till the late 60s, he noted.
"Even spending a few minutes here is a reinvigorating experience. But this time it was marred by air pollution from other parts of North India that has reached Bharatpur.
"With a PM 2.5 reading of more than 350, the surprising part is that the locals did not realise the extent of pollution. It shows the huge gap in awareness on public health and pollution beyond the big metros," Ramesh said in a post on X.
Delhi and surrounding areas have been experiencing heavy pollution for the past few days due to several factors including the burning of stubble by farmers in the north. PTI SKC ZMN