New Delhi: Expressing concern over air pollution, Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday outlined the contribution of Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) for its foresighted approach towards air pollution and stated that the difference in air quality when CNG was introduced in public vehicles was very evident.
“We, who live in this capital, notorious now as world’s most polluted city can recall the difference in air quality when CNG was introduced in public vehicles. This transformation was made possible by Centre for Science and Environment and the Congress government of the day,” Gandhi said while speaking at the Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development ceremony.
Sonia also announced that this year’s prize was being given to NGO, Centre for Science and Environment (CSE).
“Since its establishment, CSE has become virtually India’s conscience in the fight to preserve, protect and improve our natural environment. Over the years it has striven to raise awareness of the problem long before it became the major crisis we face today,” she said.
She went on to say that the Centre has worked on “pollution reduction projects such as – reducing the use of diesel and improving its quality; reducing water consumption in paper making; profit sharing by mining companies with deprived local communities.”
“Its work on water conservation and sanitation has been internationally recognised long before the current focus on these issues. Its pollution monitoring laboratory is the only one of its kind run by a civil society organisation in our country,” she added.
Former Vice President Hamid Ansari also presented the Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development during the event.
Recalling her late grandmother and former prime minister Indira Gandhi on her 102nd birth anniversary, Sonia Gandhi said that Indira Gandhi’s contributions to nation-building are well documented.
“She was a passionate naturalist mesmerized by the wonderful natural heritage of India, dazzled by the glorious biodiversity of India and firmly determined to preserve and protect it,” she said.