The rest of India can burst normal fireworks, but its national capital is restricted to staying ‘green’


  • The Supreme Court of India has imposed a ban on bursting pollution causing fireworks during Diwali in the country’s national capital, New Delhi.

  • Meanline, the other cities and states in the country have no such restrictions and can go about bursting normal fireworks.

  • If people in New Delhi want to burst ‘normal’ fireworks during the festive season, they will have to travel between 140kms to 200kms out of the city.
India’s top court has cracked down on fireworks ahead of Diwali, one of India’s biggest Hindu festivals. While the Supreme Court has the banned the manufacturing and sale of all ‘pollution causing’ fireworks in New Delhi in face of deteriorating air quality, other states and cities in Indian can still indulge in normal fireworks.

That being said, the Supreme Court has issued an alternative where people in New Delhi and its surrounding areas can still burst ‘green fireworks’, but only between the hours of 8PM and 10PM.

The court also mentioned that green firecrackers would eventually supersede the other kinds with the increase in their manufacturing from next year onwards.

It’s not that other states aren’t considering more strict regulations on the bursting of fireworks during the festive season, but they are still allowed to call on their previous stock of fireworks, green or otherwise according to Justice AK Sikri and Justice Ashok Bhushan.

But the ban on the online sale of fireworks through e-commerce portals like Amazon and Flipkart applies across the nation. In order to ensure effective implementation, the Supreme Court has also threatened to drag online retailers to court if they don’t abide by the issued guidelines.

The rest of India

The issue with the Supreme Court’s directive is that not everyone around India celebrates Diwali at the same time. While northern states celebrate Diwali at night, southern states prefer to celebrate it in the morning. Meanwhile most states in the east celebrate Diwali a before the actual ‘designated’ day of the festival.

States like Tamil Nadu and Puducherry have permitted the use of fireworks between the hours of 4 AM to 5 AM in the morning and 9 PM to 10 PM during the night.

Meanwhile, in the city of Mumbai, shopkeepers are diversifying the products they offer to include more ‘decorative fireworks’ and those approved by the Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation (PESO).

The firework ban legally covers areas that are nearly 140 kms to 200 kms from the eastern and the southern borders of Delhi spreading out over 21 districts of Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.

About 35% of the citizens responded positively towards the ban of polluted firecrackers considering the worsening air pollution situation. However, a lot of people still believe that the ban will not make much of a difference to the air quality. Majority of people are now gearing up for muted celebrations this Diwali, though the effectiveness is yet to be seen.

Government initiatives have largely impacted the fireworks industry in India and it has seen a degradation of nearly 40% over the last five years.
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