SC seeks Centre, Delhi response on infants' plea to ban crackers

Last Updated : 08 October 2015, 19:13 IST

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The Supreme Court on Thursday sought the Centre as well as the Delhi government’s response on a plea made by three toddlers seeking ban on firecrackers before the onset of festival seasons. However, the court refused to pass any interim order.

A three-judge green bench presided by Chief Justice H L Dattu also issued notice to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the Delhi Pollution Control Board (DPCB) asking them to clarify their stand on the PIL by next Friday.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the infants, submitted, “We do not want all children to become Ninjas (Japanese character used in covert activities in 16 th -17 th centuries)”.

Taking a cue from Justice Dattu’s reference to his grandson looking like a ninja by wearing a mask to avoid high levels of pollution in Delhi in another case, he said that poisonous and cancerous smoke layers were created by bursting of crackers.

Sibal said, some solutions were to be found as around 40 per cent children suffered from some kind of respiratory problems.

He sought a direction to the authorities to come up with short and long term steps to deal with the issue.

 Senior advocate K K Venugopal urged for taking urgent corrective steps. The bench, while sharing the concern expressed by the counsel, agreed to consider the matter on October 16.

In their petition, Arjun Gopal and Aarav Bhandari, aged six months each, along with Zoya Rao Bhasin, 14-month-old contended before the court that it was high time as pollution affected young people the most, causing various diseases including lung cancer, bronchitis, asthma, irregular heat beats. They said the job of cleaning up Delhi cannot be left to a slow-moving state machinery.

They urged the court to stay the grant of firework licenses, claiming the rules showed that “environmental and pollution concerns are furthest from the minds of the government representatives.” In their plea, the three, through advocate fathers said they were being slowly choked by Delhi's “toxic, deadly and unclean” air which is also likely to affect the generations of Indians yet to be born.

Published 08 October 2015, 19:13 IST

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