The Supreme Court in a major step with an emphasis on the health of children banned the transportation of firecrackers in Delhi-NCR for Dussehra and Diwali.
The court observed that the Delhi residents and the entire NCR are entitled to breathe unpolluted air and hence entitled to the protection of their health as well form the adverse consequences of breathing in air that is caused by the bursting of fireworks.
Modifying its previous order of suspending the license of the firecrackers, the apex authority gave them 30 days to counter why the quantity of firecrackers shouldn’t be reduced to 50% by 2018. It also held that only 50% of that was permitted in 2017 to be sold this year and eventually it would reduce over the next two years. In addition, the revival of the license would be reviewed depending upon the quality of air post-Diwali. The bench also ordered not to grant more than 50% of the number of the temporary license granted in 2016. It also held that the dealers should exhaust the firecrackers already available.
The court also directed the police authorities and District Magistrate to ensure that firecrackers are not burnt within the vicinity of 100 meters from the hospitals, school, court, educational institution etc. It has also asked the Department of Education of the Government of NCT of Delhi and the corresponding Department in NCR shall formulate and execute a plan of action to reach out to children in schools through staff, NGO, volunteers to educate them on health problems and ill effects of breathing polluted air.
Further, a committee was also set up to carry out research on the impact of bursting firecrackers during Diwali and Dussehra. The chairman of the committee will be the chairperson of the Central Pollution Control Board who will submit its report by December 31.
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