NGT bans firecrackers in cities, towns across India

The NGT directed that in the cities or towns where air quality is ‘moderate’ or below, only green crackers can be sold and the timings for use and bursting of crackers be restricted to two hours during festivals.

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Monday ordered a complete ban on firecrackers in cities and towns across the country where the average of ambient air quality fell under the poor category or above (worse) during November.

The NGT also directed that in the cities or towns where air quality is ‘moderate’ or below, only green crackers can be sold and the timings for use and bursting of crackers be restricted to two hours during festivals like Diwali, Chatt, New Year and Christmas Eve etc., as may be specified by the concerned state.

If nothing is specified by the state, timing will be 8 pm to 10 pm on Diwali and Gurupurb, 6 am to 8 am on Chatt and 11:55 pm to 12:30 am during Christmas and New year eve (which have yet to come and do not fall in November but if ban continues) and not otherwise, the tribunal said.

A bench headed by Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel said the CPCB and the State PCBs/PCCs may regularly monitor the air quality during this period which may be uploaded on their respective websites. CPCB may compile information on the subject, including the status of compliance of this order from all the States/UTs and file a consolidated report with data compiled till filing of report, before the next date by e-mail at judicialngt@gov.in preferably in the form of searchable PDF/OCR Support PDF and not in the form of Image PDF.

All states/UTs/PCBs/PCCs may initiate special drives to contain air pollution from all sources in view of potential aggravation of Covid-19. The chief secretaries and DGPs of all the states/UTs may issue and circulate an appropriate order in above terms with appropriate enforcement guidelines to all the District Magistrates and Superintendents of Police, PCBs/PCCs, it added.

Specified notice or orders in this regard is yet to be issued for Manipur. 

First Published:Nov. 10, 2020, 8:42 p.m.

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