National Green Tribunal has decided to consider measures for improving the air quality in as many as eighteen States and Union Territory in addition to Delhi NCR. The bench on November 4, 2020 headed by National Green Tribunal Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel has decided to expand the scope of proceedings in a batch of petitions seeking remedial action against pollution by use of fire crackers in NCR.
The Tribunal has said that "The scope of proceeding may need to be extended beyond NCR so as to suggest that in all the concerned state where air quality is not satisfactory may consider taking action on the pattern of action taken by State of Orissa and Rajasthan".
The State of Orissa and the State of Rajasthan have issued a notification prohibiting the sale and use of firecrackers in respective state. Now the title of the case has been changed to "Tribunal on its own motion".
The Bench also said that it has to consider directions to prohibit the use of fire crackers during the period when air quality is beyond the threshold in 122 non-attainment cities. The Bench also comprised of Judicial Member S K Singh and Expert Member SS Garbyal and Nagin Nandu who sought response from the Government of Andhra Pradesh, Assam , Bihar, Chandigarh , Chhattisgarh , Chandigarh , Gujarat , Himachal Pradesh , Jammu and Kashmir , Jharkhand , Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh , Maharashtra , Meghalaya, Nagaland , Tamil Nadu , Telangana , Uttarakhand and West Bengal. Earlier the National Green Tribunal has issued notice to the Government of Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. The order stated as follows:-
"Accordingly, we consider it appropriate to issue a notice to all the States and Union Territory where the above cities fall, in addition to the notice already issued to the Government of Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. Notice need not be issued to the States of Odisha and Rajasthan in view of the notification issued by the said State. To all other States and Union Territories where the above cities fall notice may be issued by e-mail to the concerned Chief Secretariat returnable for tomorrow".
At the start of this week, the National Green Tribunal had issued a notice to the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest and Central Pollution Control Board. The National Green Tribunal had decided to examine whether the use of fire cracker may be prohibited in National Capital Region from November 7 to November 30, 2020, in the interest of public health and environment.
It also observed that "Firecracker emit poisonous gas like SO2, NOX , CO as well as the mental besides creating noise. In given climate condition, this may result in respiratory disease, pulmonary disease, diabetic, hypertension and other diseases. There are also expert views on the clear nexus of air pollution with Covid-19; with increase their pollution virus can cause more damage".
Fire crackers also leave metal particles in the environment. And exposure to fine particles, like those found in smoke and haze, is linked to negative health implications, such as coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, asthma attacks and even heart attacks. Diwali festival according to the Hindu mythology is for lightning the earthen diyas and worshiping Lord Ganesh and Goddess Lakshmi. So, Firecrackerd can be avoided to ensure clean and safe environment at all costs.