The Supreme Court’s ban on selling firecrackers till November 1 has come as a blow to the traders and businessmen dealing in these products as well as to those who enjoy the spectacle. Firecracker sellers have protested in many parts of Delhi and NCR. Traders said that the wholesalers will not suffer too much pain as sales will continue into the wedding season, as per The Times of India. But, it is the small and seasonal sellers, who bought firecrackers mainly for Diwali, will be affected, they said. Writing for The Indian Express newspaper, senior journalist Karan Thapar said the decision to re-impose the ban is extreme, unjustified and, perhaps, inadequately thought-through. He said that the worst part is it will offend tens of millions and pit them against this decision.
Pointing out that the ban is on the sale of firecrackers and not their use, Thapar argued that those who already have firecrackers, or, presumably, are able to obtain them from outside Delhi would go off scot-free. He also stressed on the fact that many people have already bought their crackers as they’re cheaper now. Thapar also questioned why the ban only applies to Delhi and nearby towns, saying whether it is fair and logical, or is it whimsical? The veteran journalist also suspected that since the Court sits in Delhi, therefore, it only worries about the pollution around it, as per IE.
Thapar also raised concern about the industry upon which the livelihood of thousands of shopkeepers and traders are dependent. Citing the example of note ban, he said the decision was like that of demonetisation which was supposed to extinguish black money but did not. These firecrackers could leak into the system, he said adding, “if that happens, it will be a slap on the Court’s face,” as per Thapar.
Thapar said the ban is unwarranted and, even, arguably immoral. Stating the reasons for his view, Thapar said “First, it will make Diwali joyless for tens of millions. For them, it’s the most important religious festival and this is, consequently, not just cruel but irreligious. Second, it overturns generations, if not centuries, of tradition. Crackers on Diwali are as customary as the tree at Christmas or seviyan at Eid. Third, this verdict is bound to annoy millions more than it will please and that puts the court in a very invidious position.”