The government of Punjab on Tuesday banned manufacture, stock, distribution, sale and use of joined firecrackers in whole of the state adding only green crackers would be allowed for sale and use.
In a notification issued by the state government, it said, during Diwali crackers bursting shall be allowed from 8-10 pm while that on Christmas from 11:55 pm to 12:30 am and on New Year from 11:55 pm to 12:30 am.
“Only the green crackers (those crackers that do not use barium salts or compounds of antimony, lithium, mercury arsenic, lead or strontium, chromate) would be allowed for sale and use in Punjab," said the state government in an order.
“Sale and use of any kind of firecrackers is prohibited in the cities of Mandi Gobindgarh and Jalandhar from midnight of 28-29 October to the midnight of 31 December of 2021-01 January of 2022 in terms as the average air quality index for the month of November 2020 of Mandi Gobindgarh and Jalandhar has remained in poor category," read the order.
“For promoting community fire cracking, particular area/fields would be pre-identified and pre-designated by the concerned authorities immediately and the same shall be publicized for information of the public at large," it said.
It has also ordered e-commerce websites including Amazon and Flipkart to not accept any orders and affect online sales of firecrackers within Punjab.
Earlier, the Chandigarh administration had ordered a blanket ban on the sale or use of firecrackers of any kind to prevent the risk of spread of Covid-19 due to polluted atmosphere.
"The decision has been taken keeping in view the ongoing Covid situation, order of National Green Tribunal and Disaster Management Act," the notification further said.