The Delhi government on Wednesday banned the storage, sale and use of firecrackers during Diwali owing to the severe pollution levels in the city. “Seeing the severe pollution levels in the national capital for the last three years during Diwali, a complete ban is being imposed on storage, sale and use of all types of firecrackers in Delhi this time, just like last year," Kejriwal tweeted in Hindi.
“Last year, the ban was imposed after traders had already stored firecrackers for sale which had resulted in losses for them. I appeal to the traders to not stock up on firecrackers in view of the complete ban," he said.
Kejriwal had on Monday said he would call on the Union environment minister with the audit report of Pusa bio-decomposer, a microbial solution that can turn stubble into manure in 15-20 days, and ask him to direct states surrounding Delhi to distribute it for free among farmers.
He had said the audit by a central agency has found the use of Pusa bio-decomposer highly effective.
Meanwhile, with the aim of addressing air pollution, in Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR) due to stubble burning in the adjoining states of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, the Centre has released Rs 496 crore to subsidize machinery required in-situ management of crop residue.
Addressing the media in Delhi, Sanjay Agarwal, Secretary of Union Ministry of Agriculture informed that the Centre released Rs 496 crore for four state-Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, and Punjab to subsidize machinery required in-situ management of crop residue during 2021-22.
“For the year 2021-22 fund amounting Rs 235 crore has been released for Punjab, Rs 141 crore has been released for Haryana, Rs 115 crore for Uttar Pradesh and Rs 5 crore has been released for Delhi. Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and other central agencies also received Rs 54.99 crore," informed Agarwal.
In July this year, the Supreme Court had dismissed a plea challenging the National Green Tribunal’s order for the imposition of a complete ban on the sale and use of all firecrackers during the COVID-19 pandemic in cities, said that no further clarification or deliberation was required.