Diwali in New Delhi: Residents will be allowed to burst firecrackers between 8pm-10 pm

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Following a Supreme Court mandate, residents will only be allowed to burst firecrackers between 8pm-10pm at pre-ascertained ‘commonplaces’. A bench of Justice A K Sikri and Justice Ashok Bhushan came out with the order on pleas seeking clarification and modification of its October 23 order banning the manufacture of non-green crackers and fixing time to burst crackers on various festive occasions.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), North Delhi, Nupur Prasad told news agency ANI that members of resident welfare associations and other citizen bodies have been instructed to zero in on a common place where citizens can burn firecrackers. Those found selling crackers illegally will be booked, she said adding that several individuals have been arrested for the same in the last couple of days.

The court’s order came on applications filed by firecracker manufacturers and traders who said there were no green crackers available as of now and they should be allowed to sell the existing stock this season.

Senior Advocate Ranjit Kumar, appearing for traders, cited the Centre’s affidavit which said that low-emission fireworks will be available only from June 2019 to impress the court. The court, however, did not agree.

Deciding petitions seeking a ban on crackers to fight growing air pollution, the court, while rooting for a “balanced approach”, had refused to order a complete ban on their sale and use, but had imposed stringent conditions regarding their composition and usage.

This comes days after the Supreme Court had ruled that people can only burn firecrackers between 8 pm to 10 pm.

The apex court Wednesday clarified that only “green crackers” will be sold in the Delhi-NCR region during this Diwali and other festivals. It, however, allowed the firecrackers which have already been produced to be sold in other parts of the country this Diwali and other festivals and occasions. A bench of Justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan said on the occasion of Gurpurab, which is in November, fireworks shall be allowed for one hour in the morning between 4 am to 5 am and one hour in the evening between 9 pm to 10 pm.

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