The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a challenge to a National Green Tribunal (NGT) ban on the sale and use of firecrackers during the COVID-19 pandemic in the National Capital Region (NCR) and across all towns and villages with good indoor air quality. the poor or higher categories.
A bench led by Judge AM Khanwilkar said he didn’t need a report from the Indian Institute of Technology to know firecrackers were bad for the lungs.
The court reminded the petitioners, mostly firecracker makers who said the ban was a barrier to their livelihoods, that the world was in the midst of a pandemic.
The NGT noted in its decree of December 2020 that only green crackers would be allowed for Christmas and New Years – between 11:55 p.m. and 12:30 a.m. – in areas where the ambient air quality was in the moderate or moderate categories. lower. District magistrates have been instructed to ensure that firecrackers are not sold and offenders should pay compensation. The Court considered that the “right to undertake is not absolute. There is no right to violate air quality and noise level standards ”.
The court accepted the court order and said no further clarification was required on the matter.
In 2017, the Supreme Court banned the use and sale of toxic crackers based on a petition filed by two infants, a six-month-old and a 14-month-old. They said air pollution caused by various factors, especially firecrackers, made Delhi a gas chamber. They pleaded for their right to life. The court had said that the sale of green and improved crackers would only be done through licensed traders. He rejected arguments that cracking cookies was a fundamental right and an essential practice on religious holidays like Diwali.
“We believe that Article 25 [right to religion] is subject to article 21 [right to life]. If a particular religious practice threatens the health and life of persons, such practice is not entitled to protection under section 25… manufacturers and traders under section 19 (1) (g) of the Constitution, ”Judge Sikri observed in the 54-page judgment.
“If the situation is covered by general directives of the Supreme Court, it must be followed in letter and in spirit. In other words, these appeals are unfounded and are dismissed, ”the magistrate of Judge Khanwilkar said on Friday.