12:48 GMT +321 November 2018
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    People let off fireworks to celebrate Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, in Jammu India (File)

    Delhi Breathes Better With Cracker Ban During Festival, Twitter Debates

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    Deepawali in India is traditionally celebrated with the lighting of lamps and bursting of firecrackers. This year, the country’s apex court has restricted timings for the bursting of crackers to 2 hours in the evening evoking a mixed response from citizens on social media

    New Delhi (Sputnik) — A day before Deepawali — a Hindu festival known for the fireworks, the Indian capital city of Delhi saw its cleanest November day in the last few years after an apex court imposed a partial ban on crackers.

    The central pollution control agency in a release on Monday said that Delhi's air quality this time "could be better due to weather conditions and strict action against the sale and use of crackers."

    The air quality index was at 171, which is in the "moderate" category. The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) said this was the first time since 2015.

    On October 23, the Supreme Court of India, while hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), had directed that sale of only "green crackers" with "low emission" be permitted. It also stipulated fixed occasions and timings for the bursting of crackers.

    Since the ban order, Delhi police have arrested several people in the city caught bursting fire crackers and also seized crackers weighing more than over 2500 kg, according to local news reports.

    "We have been informed that there have been a crackdown on cracker godowns, and cracker markets are closed in Delhi. Plus, even though winds will be northwesterly before and during Deepawali, IMD (India Meteorological Department) has informed us that wind speed will not fall to zero — which means there will be some movement," CPCB secretary Prashant Gargava told the news agency PTI.

    As usual, social media is abuzz with different reactions ranging from support, criticism, memes, and parodies.


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    firecrackers, toxic gas, pollution, ban, Supreme Court of India, India, Delhi
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