Amid worsening of the Air Quality Index (AQI) and increase in new cases of Covid-19 infections, the National Green Tribunal, Monday, announced a “complete ban on sale and use of all kinds of firecrackers in Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR). With this decision, more than half of the neighbouring state of Haryana will not be able to sell or burst firecrackers on the upcoming festivals of Diwali, Gurpurab and Kartik Purnima – the three main festivals celebrated in the northern region in the coming days.
On Sunday, the Haryana government led by Manohar Lal Khattar had announced a two-hour window for sale and bursting of firecrackers.
What has the NGT order said?
The NGT has imposed a complete ban on sale and use of all kinds of firecrackers in the Delhi-NCR. The ban shall come into effect from the midnight of November 9 and stay till November 30.
Which all districts of Haryana are covered in NCR?
There are at least 14 districts out of the total 22 of Haryana that are covered in the NCR. The 14 districts that will be affected by the NGT order are Faridabad, Gurgaon, Palwal, Rohtak, Jhajjar, Sonipat, Rewari, Panipat, Bhiwani, Mahendragarh, Jind, Karnal Nuh and Charkhi Dadri. Several districts of Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan are also included in the NCR, which too are likely to be affected with the NGT’s recent order.
Explained: What are green crackers?
What has the Haryana government said on firecrackers?
The order passed by the Chief Secretary, Vijai Vardhan, said, “To draw a balance between the potentially harmful consequences of bursting of crackers amidst the Covid-19 pandemic and the economic impact on small traders and keeping in view of the order of the Apex Court, on Diwali days or on any other festivals like Gurpurab etc. when such fireworks are used, it will strictly be from 8 pm till 10 pm only. On Christmas and New Year eve, when such fireworks start around midnight, i.e. 12 am, it will be from 11.55 pm till 12.30 am, only.” With NGT’s Monday order, the Haryana government too is likely to issue revised instructions as the officials said that NGT’s order will have an overriding effect on the state government’s relaxation.
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How Haryana planned to identify community fireworks?
For promoting community fireworks or bursting of firecrackers, respective district administrations were asked to pre-identify particular areas/ fields and pre-designate such places and asked them to publicise the same for information of the public at large.
What did Haryana’s order for marriages/ sale of firecrackers on e-commerce websites mean?
Even for marriages and other occasions, crackers with reduced emission (improved crackers) and green crackers are permitted. The sale shall only be through licensed traders. No-e-commerce websites including Flipkart, Amazon, Snapdeal etc. shall accept any online orders and effect online sales.
How Haryana wanted to implement its orders?
All the Deputy Commissioners were directed to execute extensive public awareness campaigns regarding the instructions. The Haryana State Pollution Control Board was asked to carry out short-term monitoring in the cities for 14 days (commencing immediately) for the parameters including Aluminium, Barium, Iron apart from the regularity parameters against the short-term Ambient Air Quality Criteria Values (AAQCVs) proposed by CPCB with regard to bursting of firecrackers.
The Haryana government also ordered that “any violation of such orders would invite immediate penal action under Section 51 to 60 of Disaster Management Act, 2005 besides legal action under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code and other provisions, as applicable.
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