No crackers for Diwali in Lucknow, 12 other UP cities with poor air quality
Uttar Pradesh chief secretary Rajendra Kumar Tiwari on Tuesday directed all district magistrates to ensure strict compliance with the National Green Tribunal’s (NGT) order banning sale and bursting of crackers in cities with severe, very poor or poor air quality.
The government has identified 13 cities, including Lucknow, on the basis of the average ambient air quality found in November last year to enforce the NGT directions.
Eight of these cities, including Ghaziabad, Noida, Greater Noda, Baghpat and Bulandshahr ( “severe” category), Meerut and Hapur (“very poor”) and Muzaffarnagar (“poor”) are in the National Capital Region (NCR).
The five other cities are Kanpur, Lucknow and Moradabad (“severe” category), Agra and Varanasi where the air quality has been found to be “very poor”.
The chief secretary has said in a circular that only digital/laser and similar other techniques could be used to celebrate Diwali in these cities according to the NGT order.
“The other cities where air quality is “moderate” or below, only green crackers can be sold and used,” the circular said.
In an order on November 9, NGT directed states, “There will be ban against sale or use of all kinds of crackers in the NCR from midnight of November 9-10, 2020 to November 30-December 1.” It said that the direction would be reviewed thereafter.
“The direction will also apply to all cities and towns in the country, where the average of ambient air quality during November (as per available data of last year) falls under “poor” and above category,” the NGT order said.