Fresh air for sale: The New Delhi oxygen bar offering respite from smog

(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) –With New Delhi blanketed by toxic smog, some of the Indian capital’s residents have turned to a bar selling hits of purified oxygen to escape the pollution.

The bar, called Oxy Pure, opened its doors in May but has seen a spike in customers in recent weeks as New Delhi has been hit by soaring pollution levels.

For a fee of 500 rupees, or a little over €6, customers at the bar inside an upmarket New Delhi mall can get access to 15 minutes of up to 99 percent pure oxygen.

They can even choose between different flavours of oxygen, including orange, cinnamon and peppermint.

“When I checked recently, the air quality index was showing at around 642, which is extremely dangerous for your health,” said Oxy Pure owner Ajay Johnson.

“This session helps a lot in that. It detoxifies the body and reduces the impact of pollution and all the carbon you are inhaling. It also energises the body and makes you feel relaxed.”

New Delhi consistently ranks among the world’s most polluted cities. But factors including the weather and the annual burning of crops by farmers have seen pollution levels reach dangerous heights this month, with particles in the air often exceeding 20 times what is considered safe by the World Health Organisation.

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