CHENNAI: Most of north Chennai has been forced to bear the worst of the city’s pollution burden. With the need to push open a conversation about the region’s dire, everyday circumstances, band Justice Rocks return to music to get their message through. The band has roped in rapper Sofia Ashraf and G Logan to put to music the real-time effects of air pollution in Kaatha Vara Vidu: Let Chennai Breathe.
The video shows out-of-breath kabaddi players struggling to breathe in the backdrop of choked chimneys and smoke-clad skies.
This was inspired by a kabaddi coach who had worried out loud about the pollution affecting the children’s stamina. The song also points to the discrimination that even such a catastrophe manifests. “This is an alarm call that north Chennai is groaning under the disproportionate burden of pollution. It’s not just pollution anymore, it’s racism,” says activist Nityanand Jayaraman.
Hours after its release, the song launched by Dr Rex Sargunam, former director of Institute of Child Health, and actor Charles Vinoth has been gaining momentum on social media sites. “We’re going to be working closely with the kids. We’ll teach them the science, they already know the politics of it. They will be taking the message forward,” he details.