Civic body bans firecrackers, issues detailed dos and don’ts for citizens
Geetanjali Minhas | November 9, 2020 | Mumbai
Aiming to curb pollution amid the Covid-19 pandemic, the BrihanMumbai municipal corporation (BMC) on Monday imposed a ban on the use of firecrackers and fireworks – during the festival of Diwali – and issued guidelines and rules for public.
“Covid-19 patients deal with respiratory issues and are more likely to have low oxygen levels. Keeping this in mind and the fact that smoke of firecrackers can cause inconvenience to the patients, the use of firecrackers or fireworks is being banned in areas under the BMC jurisdiction,” it has said in a statement.
In its advisory, the municipality has said that citizens must avoid visiting each other’s homes, keep a bucket of soap and water at the door for those entering their homes and not to use sanitiers while lighting lamps and fireworks in the festive season.
Guidelines on fireworks
1. No firecrackers of any kind allowed in public places like marine drive, beaches, public gardens, playground etc. or private premises in the BMC area.
2. Hotels, clubs, gyms, institutions, business premises, etc. are barred from use of any type of firecrackers and hosting of any related events in premises belonging to them. BMC has warned of strict action along with the police against those who violate both the above rules.
3. Only small firecrackers like sparklers (‘phuljhadi’) and flowerpots (‘anaar’) in a controlled manner allowed on the evening of Lakshmi Pujan on November 14, in the private premises of the housing society – like the courtyard of building or of the house, etc.
4. Mandatory for parents/elders to supervise their children in case they light above mentioned firecrackers and sparklers and a bucket of water, soap and a cotton handkerchief must be kept handy.
5. While lighting small firecrackers in their housing premises, citizens must wear masks maintain physical distancing.
6. As sanitizers used to clean hands are likely to be flammable, citizens should not sanitizers or even carry them while lighting Diwali lamps, small firecrackers and sparklers. Citizens must wash their hands properly with soap and water.
Precautionary measures against Covid-19
1. Maintain physical distance, frequently wash hands with soap and water and use masks. For Diwali, shopping should happen in less crowded areas and during non-peak hours
2. While drawing rangolis and lighting diyas, keep a bucket of water and soap near the door to ensure that people enter your home only after washing their hands, feet and face.
3. Avoid any type of social gathering, visiting homes of acquaintances and relatives during Diwali. Convey your festive greetings over phone or hold a virtual meeting via video conferencing.
4. The celebrations of Bhaubeej by brothers and sisters should be done online – via video conferencing. Those intending to visit a house owing to unavoidable circumstances must wash their hands, feet and face properly with soap before entering and use or carry their own handkerchief/cloth. Mask must be worn at all times, even at home during such visits.
While cautioning citizens, municipal commissioner and additional chief secretary Iqbal Singh Chahal said, “Continuous efforts of the administration paired with citizens’ cooperation have brought down the city’s Covid figures under control. However, the virus is highly contagious and we can’t drop our guards. Citizens should observe physical distancing, wear masks in public places and wash their hands with soap frequently. In order to celebrate the festivities in a controlled manner, it is important to avoid visiting each other’s homes.”
Anti-noise activist Sumaira Abdulali had urged the state government to consider a ban on firecrackers during the festive season, and she had also drawn the authorities’ attention to laboratory tests confirming the hazardous effects of firecrackers. Read more about it here:
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