Madhya Pradesh: Should we have a cracker on Diwali? Jaan hai to jahan hai, say residents
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BHOPAL: Three states - Delhi, West Bengal and Haryana - have already banned firecrackers this Diwali. Many others including Maharashtra may follow suit.

Free Press asked people whether firecrackers should also be banned in Madhya Pradesh. All of them favoured the ban saying that the air pollution due to firecrackers will worsen condition of corona patients. The representative of firecracker sellers’ association, however, disagreed, arguing that a ban may push lakhs of people engaged in the trade to starvation. Excerpts:

Adds toxic gases to atmosphere

Bursting of crackers adds toxic gases and chemicals to atmosphere. It lowers quality of air we breathe and is harmful not only for Covid-19 patients but also for others, especially those suffering from lung-related ailments. Every Diwali, there is rise in lung, eye and skin disease. At a time, when country’s economy is in a bad state, why should we waste money for momentary pleasure?

Dr Lokendra Dave, Gandhi Medical College pulmonology department head

Can do without crackers

The government should go for a ban on firecrackers. Unlike other respiratory diseases, Covid-19 is contagious. The coronavirus may attack the weakest member of a family, an old person or a child and that person will spread disease to entire family. Diwali can be celebrated without crackers.

Mahesh Saxena, ex- District Child Welfare Committee president

Ban them

Given the present scenario, it is my view that firecrackers should be banned. We all know that with rising pollution in Delhi, Covid cases are also rising. It is clear that the two are inter-connected. Besides, polluted air is also harmful for asthma patients.

Pushpa Rao, Government Kamla Nehru Girl’s HSS principal

I support ban

Firecrackers should be banned. Air pollution is growing and toxic gases that will rise from firecrackers will stay close to ground due to low temperature. We all will inhale that poison. It will be fatal for Covid-19 patients.

Surendra Shukla, Nehru Yuva Kendra, Bhopal district coordinator

Take precaution

Precaution is the only way to protect ourselves from Covid-19. “Jaan hai to jehan hai.” We will be able to celebrate festivals only if we are alive. If the government bans crackers, Hindu Utsav Samiti will support it.

Kailash Begwani, Hindu Utsav Samiti head

No ban

The ban is being imposed in states where Covid-19 cases are high. That is not the case in MP. I don’t think we need a ban here. If a sudden ban is imposed, it will ruin lakhs of people associated with firecracker business. Most small firecracker sellers have taken loans on high interest rates. What will they do? They will either commit suicide or take to crime.

Daulatram Sabnani, Thok Aatishbaji Vikreta Sangh president

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