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Ban On Sale of Firecrackers : Is It Communal Or Environment Friendly?


While Hindus are making themselves all set to celebrate Diwali , the Supreme Court (SC) banned sale of firecrackers in Delhi NCR during this Diwali to control air pollution. This decree turned out to be outrageous for some people saying the decision is communal.

As soon as the decision was promulgated a renowned novelist Chetan Bhagat took to twitter and vent his rage against the SC’s order. By his tweet he tried hard to prove that the SC’s order is absolutely communal.

On the other hand, some people embraced the SC’s decision and expressed that the decision will prove supportive in the process of air pollution reduction.

Whether people embrace the SC’s decree or cry foul against it, this is upto the people. As far as the reason behind SC’s decision is concerned SC says the decision is absolutely to control air pollution in Delhi NCR region.

“some people are trying to give a communal tinge to our order… but we will consider that as people expressing their anguish at our order,” says the court.

“If someone knows me, I am myself spiritual in these matter. But this is a legal issue,” says Justice A.K. Sikri, who leads the Bench.

A glimpse of air pollution earlier on Diwali festive

It is usual that during the winter season in the capital and its adjoining areas the air quality starts plunging. However, during the Diwali festival the air quality gets more deteriorated.

According to some data air quality from the last three years revealed that air quality gets worsened on Diwali and the day after.

Yesteryear, air quality was in the “severe“ category in the festive season.  According to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research, it was with an Air Quality Index (AQI) of 443 on October 30 (Diwali day). It went up to 472 the very next day before dropping slightly- recording an AQI of 392 on November 1.

The SC took the decision to control rather to test whether this will be helpful or not. The court responded to its November 2016 decision to suspend the sale of firecrackers “to test itself in order to find out whether there would be positive effect of this suspension, particularly during Diwali period”.

Is bursting firecrackers a part of Diwali festive?

Many are saying that how can Diwali be celebrated without firecrackers. However, bit of digging around and out proved that fireworks are not actually an Indian concept.

In 7th century, firecrackers were invented first in China and then it spread to other countries. Chinese would believe that loud bursting sounds and lights would ward off and scare evil and notorious spirits.

Bursting of firecrackers was initially practiced by Mughals to entertain the royals and the kings but gradually it assumed religious significance of symbolizing the victory of good over evil. Afterwards, it got tagged along with Diwali too.

On the day of Diwali it is believed that Rama returned to Ayodhya after defeating Ravana and completing his 14 years of exile. To celebrate the victory the citizens of Ayodhya decorated the entire city with the earthen lamps.

However, there is no proof that people of Ayodhya had burnt fireworks on the day.  Even, Ramayana or other scriptures have no mention of practice of the bursting of firecrackers on the occasion.

It is crystal clear from the above discourse that the SC’s decision is not communal at all but it is to control the air pollution in order to control the detrimental effect of  bursting firecrackers on air and human body.