The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has issued directions to the district magistrates of Ghaziabad and Noida to ensure strict implementation of the apex court order on burning of fire crackers on Christmas and New Year.
The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has issued directions to the district magistrates of Ghaziabad and Noida to ensure strict implementation of the apex court order on burning of fire crackers on Christmas and New Year. In two separate notices dated December 10, CPCB Chairperson S P Singh Parihar called on the district magistrates of Noida and Ghaziabad to step up and take extensive ground actions to prevent polluting activities.
The CPCB asked the officials to ensure that orders of the Supreme Court on regulating the bursting of crackers are complied with during Christmas and New Year celebrations. The court had directed that bursting of crackers on Diwali and other festivals be limited to two hours and only “green firecrackers” be sold in Delhi and the National Capital Region.
However, gross violations of the order were observed during Diwali with rampant burning of toxic firecrackers across the country. A thick haze had engulfed Delhi the morning after Diwali as the city recorded its worst air quality of the year. The pollution level in the national capital had entered the “severe-plus emergency” category or 10 times the permissible limit.
Police had registered over 550 cases and arrested over 300 people for violating the apex court’s order on November 8, a day after Diwali. On the day of the festival, 2,776 kgs of crackers were seized, 87 people arrested and 72 cases registered in connection with illegal sale of firecrackers. The CPCB, in its notice to the DMs, observed that in Ghaziabad, 45 temporary licences were issued for sale of firecrackers. “However, no verification or compliance status of licence conditions have been reported,” Parihar said in the notice.
In Noida, 83 licenses were issued for sale of green firecrackers and affidavits were taken from licence-owners stating that they would comply with the apex court directions, the notice read, adding that action taken against violators was “unsatisfactory”.
“As per report received, actions taken were unsatisfactory to curtail the higher air pollutant levels and additional measures for control of air pollution is required as air quality is a major concern during winters,” Parihar said. The CPCB sought reports on the issue by January 7.