The District Magistrate, East Khasi Hills District has informed that Diwali will be celebrated on the 14th November 2020 in the whole of East Khasi Hills District, and during the course of the celebration of the festival, bursting of firecrackers in public places and public thoroughfares, if unregulated, will significantly affect the air quality and will produce a large volume of noise and also bursting of crackers leads to increased air pollution which will have an adverse impact on health, and hence it is deemed necessary to ban certain categories of firecrackers and restrict the timing for the usage of all others.
The District Magistrate has also informed that the Hon’ble NGT in Order dated 09.11.2020 has noted that air pollution from all sources has to be contained in view of potential aggravation of COVID-19, and hence there is a felt need to restrict the usage of firecrackers.
Further, the District Magistrate informed that the Government has also directed that the sale and usage of foreign-made firecrackers are strictly prohibited.
Therefore, the District Magistrate, East Khasi Hills District, Shillong in the exercise of the powers conferred under section 144 Cr.P.C has issued an order on 10th November 2020 prohibiting the sale, purchase, and procurement of foreign-made firecrackers, use of joined firecrackers (series crackers or laris) which cause huge air, noise and solid waste problems, use of firecrackers generating noise level exceeding 125 dB (A1) or 145 dB (C) pk at 4 meters distance from the point of bursting and bursting of crackers within 100 meters of hospitals, nursing homes, primary and district health care centers, educational institutions, courts, religious places or any other areas which may have been declared as silent zones by the concerned authorities.
The District Magistrate also directed that the bursting of firecrackers is permitted only from 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM on the 14th November, 2020.
The District Magistrate said that the sale of fire crackers shall only be through licensed traders and it shall be ensured that these licensed traders sell only those firecrackers which have been permitted by the office of the District Magistrate, East Khasi Hills and are in compliance to Central Pollution Control Board guidelines.
This order shall come into force with effect from 10th November, 2020 and remain in force till the celebration of the Diwali Festival is over. (MIPR)