Delhi seems to believe the festival of lights isn't really a festival without fire-crackers bombing your ears and making breathing the next morning a difficult sport.
According to reports, Delhi's air quality index today touched at 999 around 4 a.m. while it reduced to 506 at 7 a.m. That 'reduce' bit makes little difference though.
With Delhi's air quality plummeting to dangerous levels around Diwali every year, the Supreme Court in 2018 banned polluting firecrackers and ordered that only green firecrackers, which is said to cause 30 per cent less pollution, can be manufactured and sold. But the green pyrotechnics have failed to draw good response both from sellers and buyers, primarily due to lack of variety, limited stock and high prices.
Last year also, people continued to buy firecrackers and use them.
And what happened this year? Well, social media came together to discourage people from lighting firecrackers.
Climate change is real no matter what our leaders say!What happened to our education?How blind do we have to be to be oblivious to that?Do we need strict rules be imposed for everything as tiny as this?
— Deepkiran Cheema (@DeepkiranC) October 28, 2019
I support the ban on firecrackers. Do you? #Diwali2019 #Diwali #DilliKiDiwali #DiwaliCelebration #diwalimemes @PetaIndia @iam_juhi pic.twitter.com/0PDm8Brigp — Sagar Mavani (@SagarMavani_) October 27, 2019
This is probably not yet of public interest. But it's important that you have fun and at the same time, be responsible. Our world isn't gonna last forever.
— Red Dragons (@RedDragonsRD) October 27, 2019
And we hit 999 AQI yet again, this evening. Dear Dilli Walsh's, ease do t burst #firecrackers tomorrow on #Diwali , it's already so choking and polluted and difficult to breathe. pic.twitter.com/upE48OkNDE — Vimlendu Jha (@vimlendu) October 26, 2019
It's a smoky #Diwali in Hyderabad. There seem to be no regulations on the sale or use of #Firecrackers which are being sold in #makeshiftwholesale shops across the city & ppl have been bursting them since morning. I wish #Hyderabad learned from #Delhismistakes sooner than later. pic.twitter.com/dLh3orjueV
— Mansi Joshi (@nsi_shi) October 27, 2019
I really hope it rains in as many places possible in India all over the weekend and Diwali firecrackers/celebrations are a complete washout. This is my atheist self actually praying for this to happen. #AirPollution #Delhi #India #Diwali #Firecrackers — Paroma Mukherjee (@ParomaMukherjee) October 24, 2019
How is bursting firecrackers tradition? Firecrackers have gunpowder which was invented by Chinese in 11th century (close to 1000 years ago). Ramyana happened 5000 years ago. MATHS. #Diwali #SayNoToCrackers #Firecrackers
— Param Dane | परम दाणे (@DaneParam) October 26, 2019
Happy Diwali to all my fellow Indians. Let’s hope this Diwali brings more light and shine to us. Let’s light up Diwali with diyas and keep these furry ones in mind before bursting any crackers. It was horrible to see them this scared. pic.twitter.com/2TGmx8sYoa— Rohit Sharma (@ImRo45) October 27, 2019
And it seems a lot of them took note and changed the way Diwali is usually celebrated by us.
Ten yrs ago the noise & fumes of crackers would fill the Mumbai air a week before Diwali & for days thereafter. Today, on Diwali eve, I can’t hear the sound of a single cracker.Clearly, people(especially kids) are now respectful of the environment. Things DO change for the better— anand mahindra (@anandmahindra) October 26, 2019
At 10 pm, the most wonderful Diwali we've had in our part of Delhi in the last seven years. Lights, diyas, mithai, but very little noise and pollution. The neighbourhood kids ran a great "Make this Diwali cracker-free, some of us have asthma/ pets/ older relatives" campaign.— Nilanjana Roy (@nilanjanaroy) October 27, 2019
I travel a lot so the wife and I have an annual deal. Diwali week she goes out a lot and I stay on dog duty. It used to be me at home with a petrified dog. This year....significantly less crackers. Let's hope it stays that way tonight.— Vir Das (@thevirdas) October 27, 2019
However, despite little relief, firecrackers were burst across the country. The air quality in the national capital turned "hazardous" on Monday morning, day after revellers defied the Supreme Court-enforced two-hour limit for bursting crackers on Diwali. There was however some respite for residents of Mumbai and Kolkata as the AQI in the cites was under 200.