Top ranking athletes, gearing up to make the cut for the 2016 Rio Olympics, have a new roadblock to cross.
While practicing at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium, many athletes were reportedly seen gasping for breath. Others have been unwell since a few days and have been on medication.
As per reports published in The Indian Express, it is the city's toxic air, combined with JLN Stadium's poor conditions which has led to athletes facing health issues right before the Federation Cup which will be help on 28 April.
The Federation Cup is of huge significance for the country's athletes aspiring to clinch a berth at the Rio Olympics.
There have been complaints about the bad air quality and the dusty track surface, which according to the athletes and their coaches, have hindered their sessions massively and may negatively impact their performance at the three-day event
Over the last one week, the National Air Quality Index in the JLN area has reportedly ranged from 'poor' to 'very poor'. On 26 April, the R K Puram air quality monitoring station, the one closest to the stadium, recorded a maximum of 559 ug/m³.
Increasing incidents of fire or burning trash in the city have also added to the air pollution.