More than a century and a half ago, some intelligent soul thought that Kanpur would make an excellent place to set up industries. To this day, many thank the human and as many of them curse, continually! Why? Because most of the problems that ail our city come from it. No matter our deep-rooted love for a town that has humour in its soul and finger-licking food in its belly, venting is our God-given right. So today we talk about 10 things that make Kanpur the worst city to live in.
In the World. No, we are not saying it. WHO is stating it. As per recent studies, the air of our fair city is the most polluted. We beat out Faridabad, Varanasi, Gaya, Patna and Delhi (in that order). The international health organisation declares that the airborne toxicity is 17 times that of the average! We don't need a rocket scientist to tell us that it is the industries that is causing the pollution.
The holiest of rivers on the banks of which our town is thriving is dumped with 30 crore litres of wastewater (that is chock full of chromium) from tanneries. Each day. Do you know how much of it is cleaned by our treatment units? The capacity of the units is just shy of 17 crore litres for a day. In other words, almost half of the untreated water we add to Ganga remains as is. The cherry on the top of the chromium cake is the treatment plants that work on sometimes-running-sometimes-broken policy.
You know how do most people recognise they are nearing Kanpur? The smell of it. It is one of the dirtiest cities in the nation, and the reason is the 400 tonnes of solid waste it generates. Over and above the garbage, the rustic language of the denizens and pan strewn everywhere doesn't present a rosy picture to
Power cuts that are long, unexpected and regular like clockwork are common in Kanpur. Any person who has lived here for even a day knows it. We don't need to harp upon it, do we?
Traffic jams and congestions are so bad that a Quora user said that if you learn to drive in Kanpur, your skills will be good enough to clear the Pilot Aptitude Battery Test in the very first attempt. We are pretty sure that each one of us will agree to it. Tempos have made driving in the city a special kind of hell.
To be fair, it is not just the tempos and traffic in general. When compared to other metropolitans, Kanpur has the poorest roads, even though we have the highest number of vehicles in the state. Each year, we are adding more and more vehicles, but the road network has remained the same for decades. Bad roads + Too Many Cars = better-not-to-drive. No technological improvements, no infrastructure development, barely any famous eateries and a rare chance of finding a big retail brand.
The list of woes is endless and about 7 years back, it was proven by a TOI survey. It scored a few cities on aspects such as public amenities, urbanization and compared them with metropolises around the world. Guess which city ranked the lowest? We bet, you got it one. 'The quality of city systems and quality of life' in Kanpur is the worst. It is high time we turn around this legacy.