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Amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and rising air pollution, several states in India have banned firecrackers ahead of the Diwali festival. While some states have declared a complete ban, few have announced a ban on imported crackers, to protect the environment as well as avoid the possible gatherings.
Here's a list of states that have declared bans on the use of firecrackers:
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was the first one to announce the ban on firecrackers on Thursday given the increase in fresh COVID-19 cases and the rising air pollution in the national capital. Kejriwal informed the decision was taken after a complete review with health officials and all District Magistrates.
On Monday, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot tweeted that his government has decided to ban the sale and to burst of firecrackers to protect the health of COVID-19 patients, and in view to protect the public from the poisonous smoke emanating from the firecrackers. Any shopkeeper found selling firecrackers, the authorities will charge them with a fine of ₹10,000. Besides, anyone found using fireworks will have to pay a penalty of ₹2,000.
The day after Rajasthan, the Odisha government declared a ban on the sale and use of firecrackers across the state during the festive season to keep air pollution in check and avoid aggravating health conditions of COVID-19 patients. The ban will be imposed up till November 30 as per the government order.
The Sikkim government on Wednesday imposed a complete ban on the use of firecrackers across the state in the wake of COVID-19 crisis. Chief Secretary S K Gupta issued the order under provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, up till further orders. Gupta said the number of COVID cases have been on a decline and this would help reduce the cases as well as air pollution that can have severe effects on COVID patients.
The Calcutta High Court on Thursday ordered a ban on the use and sale of firecrackers in Kali Puja and Diwali amid the coronavirus outbreak in the state. The ban will also be in force during Jagadhatri Puja, Chhath and Kartik Puja. No immersion process will take place this year.
On Friday, Maharashtra issued guidelines for curbing the spread of the virus and urged citizens to avoid bursting crackers. However, the state capital's civic body, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) had earlier declared a ban on bursting of firecrackers at public places in the city.
The state government is likely to issue a separate order banning bursting of firecrackers.
Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa on Friday confirmed the state government of issuing an order banning the use of firecrackers during the upcoming festival, due to the surging COVID-19 case the state is witnessing.
The National Green Tribunal also reserved its order on the imposition of ban on firecrackers across 23 states and UTs amidst the pollution crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier this week, the NGT had sought response from the Union Environment Ministry, the governments of Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan, the Central Pollution Control Board, the Delhi Police Commissioner and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee on the ban on the use of firecrackers from November 7 to 30.
Haryana and Madhya Pradesh announced a ban on the sale and distribution of imported firecrackers.
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