India has over two-thirds of the worlds most polluted cities with Delhi topping the list as the most polluted capital in the world! These shocking statistics about the ongoing climate crisis is exactly why Licypriya Kangujam, the 9-year-old environmental activist, has been protesting. However, in a shocking turn of events, she was detained by the Delhi Police on Sunday.
Kangujam had been protesting, along with another 12 year old, at Vijay Chowk in Delhi carrying placards and signs that demanded the Modi Government to pass a climate change law to control the worsening levels of air pollution. Using her social media, she urged other people to join her for this cause, however, she was later detained by the Delhi Police at the Parliament Street police station and then released at Jantar Mantar. Her Twitter account, managed by her guardians, were regularly posting updates on the situation.
At one point, the police took her somewhere, with no one being able to trace her for hours. She also tweeted “Later they released me. They have given me last warning to arrest if I protested again there. But I will go and protest again."
She didn’t hold back in calling out the authorities on their complacent attitudes towards the rising crisis of climate change in our country. “Main cause of Delhi air pollution is our leaders don't believe each other", she tweeted on Saturday.
''Either Coronavirus or Air Pollution will kill us"
The 9-year-old environmental activist has been at the forefront of environmental conservation and has frequently tried to urge the government to change its climate change policies in the wake of natural calamities. She has spoken in 32 countries, including the United Nations Climate Conference 2019 (COP25) and received several prestigious accolades such as the Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Children’s Award, a World Children Peace Prize and an India Peace Prize.
As one of the worlds’ leading youngest environmental activists, Licypriya was heavily influenced by the severe devastation caused by the 2015 Nepal Earthquakes. Even as a mere 4-year-old, she helped her father raise funds and collect relief material for the millions of people who were displaced by the tragedy.
Now, she is the leader of the youth movement that is calling for the attention of President Modi and lawmakers to pass a law that would be aimed at capping carbon emissions by us, the worlds 3rd largest producer of Greenhouse gases!
The arrest of this 9-year-old has sparked outrage all over social media, with people calling out the government and it's ‘fascist’ tendencies to try and silence any dissenters against them.
The activist had also turned down PM Modi’s honour of joining the #SheInspiresUS campaign, saying she is not interested in being used for Twitter campaigns and the government should ‘listen to her voice’ instead of honouring her.