Amrit Sharma, a data scientist by profession, wrote an open letter to Obama. Photograph:( Reuters )
Barack Obama is on his visit to the city for a town hall meeting scheduled today
As Delhi's air quality continues to soar beyond 'hazardous' level, a resident of the national capital urged former US president Barack Obama to wear a face mask while on his visit to the city for a town hall meeting scheduled today.
Amrit Sharma, a data scientist by profession, wrote an open letter to Obama. He also hoped that Mr Obama's move may go a long way in generating awareness among local residents and may even propel action on combating air pollution. Sharma has been invited to attend an interactive session with Obama at the town hall.
“You are one the most photographed people on earth, but none of your photos could potentially save millions of lives yet. I believe that if you wear a face mask while you are in Delhi and take a photo (of it), that alone could have an impact,” Sharma wrote in his letter to Obama. He also reasoned that most people can't really afford expensive face masks and air purifiers in a developing country like India.
The Centre said it will take "harsh measures", if needed, to prevent any repeat of the recent smog episode," PTI reported. Emergency measures will kick in if PM2.5 and PM10 concentration cross 300 and 500 ug/m3 and stay there for 48 hours at a stretch. The government of Delhi has issued a health advisory urging people to avoid stepping out during early morning and late evening hours. Schools have been directed to avoid outdoor assemblies and other activities in the early morning hours.
Air quality at various areas in the city was recorded at 'hazardous' level today. While air quality at Anand Vihar was recorded at 575 at 10 am today, DTU Delhi stood at 420. Gurugram's air quality was recorded at 253 and Dwarka was at 245.
(With inputs from PTI)