SC puts cap of 500 firecracker shops for Delhi

SC puts cap of 500 firecracker shops for Delhi

SC puts cap of 500 firecracker shops for Delhi

"It seems to us that the steps so far taken by Government of NCT of Delhi are limited to issuing directions, which is merely paperwork", a bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta said.

The court urged the Delhi government and other authorities to consider encouraging fireworks display through community participation rather than individual bursting of fireworks.

Summary: The Supreme Court on Tuesday modified its November 2016 order and lifted a ban on the sale of firecrackers in Delhi with conditions.

"The suspension of permanent licences, as directed by the November 11 order, is lifted for the time being".

Referring to the choking effect of breathing in polluting air post 2016 Diwali, the court said: "In the absence of any concerted plan of action implemented by the governmental authorities, the residents responded in an ad hoc manner by purchasing face masks and air purifiers".

According to reliable sources, changing its order in November 2016 order that suspended all the licenses granting permission for the sale of crackers in wholesale and temporary in Delhi. "A complete ban on the sale of fireworks would be an extreme step that might not be fully warranted by the facts available to us", it said.

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"At the same time it is necessary to ensure that injustice is not caused to those who have already been granted a valid permanent licence to possess and sell fireworks in Delhi and the NCR".

It observed that large number of temporary licences were issued for possession and sale of fireworks in Delhi-NCR and there was a need to regulate the availability and sale of fire crackers here. "The graded and balanced approach is not meant to dilute our primary concern which is and remains the health of everybody and the human right to breathe good quality air or at least not be compelled to breathe poor quality air", the court said.

It added that there was no response from the states within the NCR giving the "impression that air pollution is not a problem for the state governments despite the ill-effects and health hazards of bursting fireworks".

This year SC passed an order to the Delhi police, to reduce the number of temporary licenses by 50 percent of those permitted in last year and the number licenses should not exceed by 500. "The health of children should be of foremost concern in this regard", it said.

The order absolutely prohibits the use of compounds of Antimony, Lithium, Mercury, Arsenic and Lead in the manufacture of fireworks and has also prohibited the ingress of further firecrackers into NCR.

Also, on the matter of a ban of firecrackers, apex court called a committee chaired by the chairperson of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

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