Mysuru: In a bid to keep the air clean this Deepavali, the State Government has asked people to burst firecrackers only between 8 pm and 10 pm and only for four days.
The decision, in line with a recent Supreme Court directive, was taken by Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy yesterday after consulting various stakeholders. Deepavali festivities in Karnataka will be celebrated from Nov. 5 to 8.
The government has directed people to burst firecrackers only between 8 pm and 10 pm from Nov. 5 to 8 and they should use firecrackers that are less pollutant with low decibel sound levels. They have also been asked to keep away from hospitals and places of worship. The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board has been asked to monitor air quality for seven days before and after the festival.
The two-hour guideline comes after the Supreme Court on Oct. 30 modified its order on fixed time slot (8 pm to 10 pm) in southern States, but not exceeding two hours a day.
The government has directed all Urban Local Bodies to identify spots and safe areas where communities and residents can come together to burst crackers. Serial crackers (multiple crackers joined together by a wick) have been banned, and only “green crackers” as identified by the Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation can be used.
The Police have been asked to take action against those bursting firecrackers outside the permissible hours or those found selling prohibited firecrackers.
In Mysuru, the Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) has issued Trade Licence to vendors to sell crackers at designated places across the city including J.K. Grounds, Hebbal Industrial Area, Bogadi Ring Road, JLB Road, Bandanthamma Temple and Ramakrishnanagar. The rent for the respective land where the crackers are sold has to be paid to the land owner and the Trade Licence will have to be procured from the MCC.
Cracker vendors have been asked to take precautions including stationing of a fire engine at the sale venue to prevent accidents.
They have also been directed to stock sufficient amount of water and sand to prevent fire.
Speaking to Star of Mysore, cracker vendors Vijayakumar and Suresh who have been in the business since the last two decades said that last year, they had got permission to sell crackers only for three days and this year, they have got permission to sell crackers for five days.
MCC Commissioner K.H. Jagadeesha said that Trade Licences have been granted to such cracker sellers who have got No Objection Certificates from the Fire Department, Police and Chamundeshwari Electricity Company.
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