Southern states can pick their two hours for firecrackers: SC

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday allowed southern states including Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh to chose the time for bursting firecrackers during Diwali subject to the limit of two hours.

A bench of Justice A.K. Sikri and Justice Ashok Bhushan made it clear that the total duration of time to burst crackers should not exceed two hours as ruled on October 23.

The court had refused to prohibit bursting of crackers on Diwali and permitted their use with reduced emission and decibel levels for two hours — from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

The court refused to accept the submission by Tamil Nadu and the Fire Crackers Manufacturers Association that people in Tamil Nadu be allowed to burst crackers from 4.30 a.m. to 6.30 a.m. besides during the evening hours from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

It was submitted that Diwali is celebrated in north India by lighting of lamps and the festival is celebrated a day earlier in the southern parts of the country and that too in the morning.

The court also clarified that direction on bursting of green crackers was limited to Delhi and its adjoining areas and was not applicable to the rest of country.