Ban on sale of crackers to stay as SC rejects traders’ plea

RSTV Bureau
The Supreme Court today reserved its verdict on a plea seeking restoration of its last year's order banning the sale of firecrackers in Delhi-National Capital Region.

The Supreme Court today reserved its verdict on a plea seeking restoration of its last year’s order banning the sale of firecrackers in Delhi-National Capital Region.

The ban on the sale of crackers in Delhi and national capital region will continue. Supreme Court on Friday, while expressing pain over some reactions giving political contours on the order, rejected the plea to relax the ban. “Relaxing a ban would be against the very spirit of the verdict,” said the bench of Justices AK Sikri and Ashok Bhushan.

The apex court dismissed the plea of firecracker traders who had sought relaxation in the October 9 ban order and sought permission to sell crackers for at least a day or two before Diwali on October 19.

“We are not going to relax the order as far as sale of firecrackers is concerned,” the bench said and directed the Delhi Police to implement the order.

The bench also also expressed pain over certain people trying to give its order a political colour, after advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for one of the parties, referred to certain statements made by some political leaders.

The bench, however, said that people would burst firecrackers which they have purchased before the October 9 order. “Sale of firecrackers which has already taken place before the ban order. People will burst it and that will be sufficient. Anyhow, it is not going to be a cracker-free Diwali,” the court said.

Former Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the firecracker traders, suggested to the bench that the sale of crackers should be allowed at least a day or two before Diwali. He also suggested that the court could restrict the time for bursting firecrackers or its sale.

The traders had told the top court that a huge amount of money has been invested by them after their licences were revived and the latest order would cause massive loss to them.

The apex court, while banning the sale of firecrackers till October 31, had said its September 12 order temporarily lifting the stay and permitting sale of firecrackers, would be made effective only from November one.

It had said its November 11, 2016 order suspending the licences “should be given one chance to test itself” to see if there is a positive effect of this, particularly during Diwali.

(With inputs from PTI)