UP polls 2017: Here’s why voters’ demand for clean air & water can’t be met

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UP polls 2017

Clean air is among the top three issues that exercise voters in India’s most-populous state, but it isn’t an issue that political parties in Uttar Pradesh (UP) address–or want to.

UP’s air is fouled by thousands of brick kilns, sugar factories and coal-fired power plants that violate new emission standards and are among the country’s dirtiest; a seventh of India’s most polluted zones and half the country’s cities with the worst air quality are situated in the state.

The pollution-control regime is not capable of enforcing clear-air and clean-water laws, and attempts to do so have led to widespread protests.

About 138 million people will vote in the UP legislative assembly elections, which started on February 11, and polling will unfold in seven phases until March 8, 2017.

People want clean air, but chafe at enforcement

Air quality is the third most important issue in the upcoming UP elections, said voters according to a survey conducted by FourthLion Technologies, a data analytics and public opinion polling firm, for IndiaSpend.

The survey reported that 46% of urban voters and 26% of rural voters believe that the air they breathe is polluted.

FourthLion conducted 2,513 telephone interviews in Hindi of registered voters in UP, and said their sample is representative of UP’s urban and rural voters as well as socioeconomic, age, gender and caste make-up. The survey was conducted between January 24 and January 31, 2017. Read more

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