Several firecracker traders within the nationwide capital have urged the Delhi government to clarify its place over the nationwide ban on sale and use of crackers throughout Diwali. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had introduced a complete ban on the sale and use of firecrackers in Delhi. With this, the firecracker traders are more likely to endure an enormous loss, thus impacting their livelihood. Kejriwal has even made an enchantment to individuals of Deli to not burn any crackers throughout Diwali within the wake of accelerating air pollution ranges and speedy rise within the coronavirus instances.
Deepak, a cracker dealer from Trilokpuri mentioned, “I have a permanent licence and this time I had purchased green crackers of worth Rs 3 lakh. Now, we can sell them only after November 30. As per the Explosive Rules, 2008, the government should take a final decision on either abolishing it or let it remain unchanged. Every year, just a few days before Diwali, a decision is made against bursting crackers due to which we suffer huge financial losses.”
Delhi Fireworks Traders Association (DFTA) member Rajeev Jain mentioned, “The trial over banning firecrackers has been on for the last five years. While green crackers were promoted so as to curb pollution due to bursting of crackers but there is no clear definition of green crackers. Last year, sale and use of crackers such as ‘anar’ (fountain crackers) and ‘phuljhadi’ (sparklers) were allowed by the Supreme Court which helped us in mitigating some loss.”
He mentioned, “The decision of the government just ahead of Diwali has aggravated the problems for the whole fireworks industry. The state government should have informed us in 2019 itself that crackers won’t be allowed so neither crackers would have been manufactured nor traders would have purchased them?”
“The pollution level has gone up despite no crackers been burnt till now. So, it clearly shows that there are other major reasons for increasing pollution. Rather than imposing a ban every year, the government should give more clarity on Explosive Rules, 2008,” he added.
Fireworks dealer Amit Jain, who runs a store close to Jama Masjid, mentioned, “Last year, the Supreme Court permitted the sale and purchase of green crackers. The Delhi government has overturned the apex court’s decision and is acting like it is above the judiciary. The cracker traders are suffering heavy losses. Temporary licences were distributed to the traders after which they bought the stock and now they can’t sell it.”
However, the ban on crackers has changed into a political slugfest too. Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Vijay Goel is now demanding for compensation for the cracker traders. He additionally held a protest towards the Kejriwal government within the cracker market close to Jama Masjid. During the protest, he mentioned the state government simply attempting to cover its failures by such measures.
Criticising the AAP government, Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) President Anil Kumar mentioned, “It is surprising that barely a week before Diwali, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has banned the sale and use of crackers causing huge monetary loss to the cracker traders. The traders who have recently purchased the stock of green crackers are crestfallen because of loss of business. The Chief Minister is simply not concerned about their plight.”
According to the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), the cracker trade in India employs almost 10 lakh individuals and greater than 80 per cent of crackers are made in Sivakasi, Tamil Nadu. There are almost 1,100 cracker-manufacturing industries working there. The general manufacturing of firecrackers in India has been estimated at almost Rs 5,000 crore.
(With inputs from IANS)