The concerns over the rising levels of air pollution due to firecrackers during the festive season have compelled several states in the country to either completely or partially ban the usage of firecrackers.
According to reports, the Ashok Gehlot-led Rajasthan government on Friday announced that only green crackers were allowed during the festive season in the state. The Congress-led government has also issued restrictions on timings for bursting crackers during festivals.
According to the recent advisory issued by the Rajasthan government, the green crackers can be burst between 8 pm and 10 pm during festivals such as Diwali and Guruparab. During the Chhath Puja, devotees can burst crackers from 6 am to 8 am, and during Christmas and New Year eve between 11:55 pm and 12:30 am.
The Delhi Pollution Control Committee has ordered a complete ban on the sale and bursting of firecrackers in the national capital till January 1, 2022. The directive passed by the pollution control committee states that a large-scale celebration will result in the gathering of people and it will thus violate social distancing norms. Besides, it said that a high level of air pollution caused by crackers may lead to serious health issues in the state
Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin has written to his counterparts in Delhi, Rajasthan, Haryana and Odisha to consider the sale of green crackers.
The Supreme Court of India has approved the sale and bursting of green crackers as their emission is low compared to normal crackers. The green crackers have a reduced emission due to their small shell size.
The Apex Court, for the first time in 2017, permitted the usage of green crackers and had relaxed the complete ban of fireworks and crackers. As per the orders issued by the Supreme Court, the green crackers have been prepared by experts from the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (CSIR-NEERI). The crackers have been made of less harmful materials and release steam when burnt, thus suppressing the dust from spreading.
According to reports, green crackers do not contain chemicals like arsenic, barium and lithium. These crackers emit 30 percent less particulate matter pollution.