Air pollution kills over a million Indians every year.
It is strongly linked to strokes, heart attacks, many kinds of cancer, premature birth and dementia, among other ailments. Families are thrown into a viscious cycle of hospital visits, critically poor health and financial trouble impacting their productivity and ability to participate in the economy. Children born in regions of high air pollution are shown to have irreversibly reduced lung function and cognitive abilities that affects their incomes for years to come.
If one reads the newspapers there is a pattern to it. Air Pollution and associated problems get exacerbated every winter, when the Great Smog of India descends and envelops much of northern India. Doctors say, during this period, the health impact from mere breathing is akin to smoking a pack of cigarettes a day.
The crisis is so grave that it warrants emergency health advisories forbidding people from stepping out. And yet, for most of the Indians, all of it hardly matters. It seems life and business are run as usual.
It isn't that the scientific community and policymakers don't know what causes air pollution, or what it will take to tackle the problem. It is that the problem is social and political as much as it is technological, and human problems are often harder to overcome than scientific ones.
Each sector of the economy that needs reform has its underlying political, economic and social dynamics that need to be addressed to make a credible impact on emissions.
Developments in sectors like transport, industry and energy production silently contribute to air pollution, but also the 'agricultural shock' to air quality triggered by crop burning in northern India every winter.
There is also a need for all of us to understand the air pollution crisis in the context of India's meteorological conditions.
Each of us must also be aware that there will be repercussions, if we remain apathetic.
CMS Vatavaran along with Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change is convinced that the time to act has come. And it is now.
We believe visual and cinematic Storytelling is the most effective way to grow support towards most critical issue of our times – environmental pollution. And that is why, we have created a Short film festival.
This festival will be all about crafting authentic, real, emotional stories around pollution, more specifically air pollution. We are confident that these wonderful stories will compel people to take action.
We invite professional and amateur film makers, school and college students to submit their entries (up to 3 minutes) by September 30th 2019.
To submit your film kindly visit: http://moefcc.cmsvatavaran.org/