This year the real joy of festivity has lost its soul charm due to the outburst of Coronavirus. Usually, the festive season kick starts from October to New Year, where people celebrate each and every festivity with enthusiasm and happiness. But due to the soaring cases of COVID-19, citizens are obliged to remain at their homes and celebrate the festivals in low key.
Durga Puja or Dusherra was observed with no such enjoyment and with minimal celebrations adhering to the regulations projected for the virus. Now the Odisha Government announced a ban on the sale and use of the firecrackers from 10th November to 30the November. The decision was taken by the State Government due to the harmful consequences made due to the bursting of crackers and the smoke. The cases of COVID-19 are still rising, and even winter is also approaching, so according to the officials bursting of crackers can lead to more predicaments due to this situation.
A press note was issued by the Revenue and Disaster Management Department stating that Diwali can be celebrated in the traditional way of the lighting of earthen lamps or Diyas and other conservative lighting materials. The officials further requested Odisha’s people to assist regarding saving lives, and with this exposed population, it will be wise enough to avoid any sort of complications.
The officials also explain why the ban on firecrackers releases copious amounts of harmful chemicals like nitrous oxide, sulfur dioxide, and carbon monoxide. These gases can have severe consequences on the respiratory system. Even due to the COVID-19, people are already suffering, and if the pollution level rises due to the firecrackers, it will be challenging for the positive cases, especially for those who are staying at home in isolation. The elderly, children with comorbidities, and other developing respiratory problems are the notable people concerned during the winter. Further, air pollution with a tremendous concentration of suspended particular matter (SPM) exacerbates respiratory problems.
The Government further stated that anyone violating the orders of banning the sale and use of firecrackers will be punished as per the provision of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, and others prevent laws.
But the Government is ignoring the significant aspect that is banning the firecrackers can lead to the suffering of the workers who are dependable with the incomes. Already because of the pandemic, every sector of people has suffered a significant loss, and the nation is also witnessing a higher graph of unemployment. Banning and selling firecrackers can cause a considerable loss to the manufacturer and the seller whose livelihood depends on the sale only. Apart from prohibiting the crackers, the Government should also come up with an alternative solution for ordinary people’s livelihood.
The workers working in firework factories already work in miserable conditions. The pitiful wages, hazardous working conditions, and the long-term risk to health are some of the workers’ problems. And now, the ban on firecrackers can have a notable impact on the sustainability of these workers. The firework industry generates a large amount of revenue as the firecrackers are not used during Diwali but on other occasions, also like marriages.
Now with the ban of the crackers will indeed have a considerable impact on the livelihood of the people, and then it will lead to unemployment and starvation.
Article Written by Dikhya Mohanty
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