NGT bans sale and use of all kinds of firecrackers in Delhi NCR, other places with ‘poor’ air quality

National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Monday pronounced a total ban against sale or use of all kinds of firecrackers in Delhi NCR from midnight today till November 30.

In its order, NGT has ordered a ban on firecrackers in places where air quality is in ‘poor’ and ‘above’ category across India in a bid to protect people from the air pollution amid ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

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

As the COVID-19 situation is worsening in the National Capital due to rising air pollution, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on November 5, announced a ban on Firecrackers in Delhi ahead of Diwali.

Kejriwal said, “if we burst crackers, we are playing with the lives of our families.”

“Please don’t burst crackers this time. On November 14, 7.39 pm onwards, all 2 crores Delhi citizens will perform Laxmi Puja together. I along with the ministers will begin ‘Laxmi Puja’ which will be telecast live on TV,” Arvind Kejriwal said.

Delhi on Monday morning witnessed heavy smog as the air quality remained in the ‘severe category’.

According to reports, the Air Quality Index (AQI) is at 472 in the ‘severe’ category at ITO. Whereas, AQI is at 449 in Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium area.

AQI is at 484 in Anand Vihar, 470 in Mundka, 465 Okhla Phase 2 and 468 in Wazirpur, all in ‘severe category’.