Breathless: An Artistic Call To India's Air Pollution

Breathless comprises images from across India including Mumbai’s Mahul, photographed by Ishan Tankha,and researched and written by award-winning journalist Aruna Chandrasekhar.

Breathless: An Artistic Call To India's Air Pollution

An art exhibition titled ' Breathless: An Artistic Call To India’s Air Pollution Crisis' has been launched at Bombay Art Society in Bandra. It was inaugurated by Mahul resident and activist Anita Dhole and journalist Faye Dsouza. Breathless comprises of images from across India including Mumbai’s Mahul which has been shot by Ishan Tankha and written by award-winning journalist Aruna Chandrasekhar. The exhibition aims to tell stories through diverse cities and their struggles with different sources of pollution while introducing the audience to ordinary people resisting pollution. 

 “I end up spending more money on medication every month. I know of a family who are almost spending close to ₹7000 per person every month on medical expenses. Due to toxic air, everyone living in Mahul is dying a slow death, every house has people with some or the other ailments as we are surrounded by industries. Why were we picked and dumped here?” asked activist Anita Dhole

Anita Dhole left the audience stunned as she narrated the daily ordeal of those living in one of the most polluted areas of Mumbai. Surrounded by several chemical factories and two oil refineries, Mahul, the 'toxic hell in Mumbai' has been deemed unfit for human habitation by the National Green Tribunal. 

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On the inaugural day of the exhibition, singer and songwriter Ankur Tewari released the video of his song Dhuaan Dhuaan si Zindagi which is centered around air pollution. An initiative by Waatavaran Foundation and, the exhibition aims to give a face to the cost and severity of air pollution, not just in remote critically polluted areas but also in our cities.

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Talking at the event, Ankur Tewari said,“Being a Mumbaikar, its worrying for me that Mumbai is now one of the most polluted places in India. We are in the middle of a climate emergency and we cannot afford to live in denial anymore. If we don’t act now, then we might not get a chance ever. I urge the State Government to take immediate steps as this issue has a serious and direct impact on the health of people.” 

The exhibition is open for visitors until February 10, 2020.

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