2 days af­ter cracker ban, traders move SC

Hindustan Times (Gurgaon) - - Metro - Bhadra Sinha bhadra.sinha@hin­dus­tan­times.com

Two days af­ter the Supreme Court re­in­stated its ear­lier or­der and banned sale of crack­ers in Delhi and NCR till Novem­ber 1, traders moved the court ask­ing it to mod­ify the or­der.

The ad­vo­cate rep­re­sent­ing the traders men­tioned the mod­i­fi­ca­tion plea be­fore a bench headed by Jus­tice Ran­jan Go­goi and said the li­cences to sell crack­ers were re­vived pur­suant to SC’s Septem­ber 12 or­der per­mit­ting the sale with re­stric­tions. This made them pro­cure fire­crack­ers for sale dur­ing Di­wali.

The lawyer said Mon­day’s or­der would cause huge loss to the traders, who say they should be al­lowed to sell the pur­chased stock.

Jus­tice Go­goi told the lawyer that the judges who im­posed the ban would be in­formed about their ap­pli­ca­tion and also the re­quest for an ur­gent hear­ing.

In a move to pre-empt Delhi from get­ting en­gulfed with thick haze with the on­set of win­ters, SC bench headed by Jus­tice AK Sikri had on Mon­day put in abeyance court’s Septem­ber 12 or­der un­til Novem­ber 1. How­ever, burn­ing of crack­ers is al­lowed, which means those in pos­ses­sion of old stock can burst.

Cit­ing high lev­els of air pol­lu­tion in the city that forced schools to shut down af­ter last year’s Di­wali, the court said it would en­able the au­thor­i­ties to test what ef­fect does burst­ing crack­ers have on Delhi’s air.

“Burn­ing of fire­crack­ers dur­ing Di­wali in 2016 had shot up par­tic­u­late mat­ter lev­els by three times, mak­ing Delhi the worst city in the world in so far as air pol­lu­tion is con­cerned,” the SC said.

The SC ver­dict is said to have im­pacted nearly 400 tem­po­rary fire­cracker li­cence hold­ers and 150 per­ma­nent ones. Im­me­di­ate steps were taken to seal shops trad­ing in crack­ers in con­form­ity with the court’s di­rec­tive to suspend li­cences is­sued fol­low­ing the Septem­ber or­der.

SANCHIT KHANNA/HT PHOTO

Fire­cracker ven­dors protest in Sadar Bazar against the Supreme Court’s or­der on the ban on sale of crack­ers.

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