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Post-Diwali days in NCR a nightmare: Pranab Mukherjee

Thousands of people living in rural areas migrate to the cities every day, seeking better economic opportunities. Many end up in slums that are hotbeds of pollution, unhygienic conditions, said the former President of India.

, ET Bureau|
Updated: Nov 09, 2019, 11.50 AM IST
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Former President Pranab Mukherjee
NEW DELHI: Former President Pranab Mukherjee said in a blog that the past week, when air pollution breached hazardous levels in Delhi and National Capital Region, was a “nightmare”. “It made people question whether it was worth living in what is considered the heart of India,” he wrote.

The veteran politician, who was conferred the Bharat Ratna this year, argued that there should be a reverse migration from urban to rural areas. “Thousands of people living in rural areas migrate to the cities every day, seeking better economic opportunities. Many end up in slums that are hotbeds of pollution, unhygienic conditions and of a much lower quality of life than their villages,”

Mukherjee wrote. “While the State looks for the solution, we need a changed template for development and urbanization.”

The former President suggested that the government recreate rural India in a way which can house the aspirations and needs of not only the people who live there but also those who want to work and come back to their roots. “New-age skills and innovation can generate jobs which explore the rural settings with a fresh outlook,” he wrote.

This is his first blog, although he had been planning to start blogging for several months and he posted a message on cleanliness on October 11 on the Pranab Mukherjee Foundation website. People close to Mukherjee told ET that he is planning to regularly write blogs to communicate his views on issues such as politics and society. The blogs will be posted on Pranab Mukherjee Foundation’s website, which currently has a few columns written by KK Paul, former governor and senior advisor to the foundation.

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