Mysore/Mysuru: With Deepavali festival to be held from Nov. 3 to 5, the MCC has granted permission for setting up of only green cracker stalls in city for 10 days from Nov. 1 to 10.
MCC Commissioner G. Lakshmikantha Reddy said that following a Supreme Court direction on bursting of crackers during Deepavali, the State Government has issued guidelines on permitting setting up of cracker stalls. Accordingly, sale of only green crackers is allowed. Pointing out that sale of crackers made using Barium Nitrate and other crackers that cause smoke is prohibited, he said that cracker sellers will have to only sell eco-friendly green crackers.
Noting that all cracker stalls will have to get the mandatory permission from all concerned departments and competent authorities, Reddy said that cracker stalls should be set up only at public grounds and other open spaces which are far away from residential localities. Also, there should be a 6 mt. gap between two stalls and all stalls are required to keep hand sanitisers and also ensure that customers wear face mask and maintain physical distancing in keeping with COVID appropriate behaviour. Stressing on the need for stall owners to conduct thermal screening of customers for body temperature, he clarified that the license for stalls will be issued subject to certain conditions in accordance with Government SOPs.
The MCC has permitted setting up of cracker stalls at several points in city including J.K. Grounds, Chamundipuram Circle, near Bandanthamma Temple on Kantharaj Urs Road, near Surya Bakery at Hebbal, at the space along Rane Madras Factory Road in Hebbal Industrial Area, near Vijayanagar water tank and Ramakrishna Paramahamsa Circle.
Speaking to Star of Mysore, Sudarshan of Santosh Crackers said that one of the conditions set out by the MCC for issuance of License is that only green crackers that emanate less smoke be sold. Pointing out that sellers are expecting a good business this time as COVID pandemic has receded, he said that the authorities must not unnecessarily harass cracker sellers in the name of green crackers. Maintaining that cracker manufacturing had taken a hit due to COVID crisis, Sudarshan said that crackers are not being supplied in accordance with the demand. However, cracker sellers cannot hike the prices for the reason that crackers are in short supply, he added.
V. Ravi of Ravi crackers, said that cracker sales took a beating last year due to COVID and rains. Expressing fear that rains may play spoilsport this year too, he said that cracker sales below expected lines will result in losses.
What are green crackers?
Green crackers are eco-friendly crackers causing less pollution. These crackers are made with a reduced shell size and produce less emissions than normal crackers besides emitting less sound compared to non-green variants.
Cracker stalls coming up sans license:
With the festival of lights round the corner, many cracker stalls are coming up unauthorisedly at J.K. Grounds in the heart of the city. The cracker sellers seem to be getting prepared for selling of crackers and earthen lamps even before the MCC and other competent authorities issue license or No Objection Certificate (NOC) for setting up stalls.
Even as about 10 cracker stalls have come up at J.K. Grounds ahead of Deepavali, Vijaykumar, a cracker seller, said that though the stalls are coming up, the sale of crackers will begin only after getting license from the MCC and NOCs from departments such as Fire and Emergency Services, Police and CESC. Maintaining that erection of stalls requires at least 2-3 days, he said that erection of stalls will help the sellers to start business immediately after they get all required permission.
Contending that the Government has granted permission only for selling of only green crackers just like last year, Muthuraj, another cracker seller said that as directed by the Government, only green crackers will be sold. Asserting that cracker manufacturers too are focusing much on green crackers only, he said that J.K. Grounds used to have nearly 30 stalls in the past. But the COVID pandemic has hit cracker business and as such only a few stalls are coming up this year.
Expressing deep condolence over the sudden demise of actor Puneeth Rajkumar, Muthuraj said that cracker stall owners will stop sale of crackers if there is a public demand to do so in the wake of the popular actor’s death. In a related development, the sale of earthen lamps too has begun at many places across the city. Earthen lamps are being sold at Devaraja Market, Agrahara Circle, M.G. Road Vegetable Market, opposite J.K. Grounds, near Ballal Circle and near other prominent junctions in city. However, many vendors said that business is poor as Deepavali is still three days away. Meanwhile, MCC Commissioner G. Lakshmikantha Reddy said that cracker sellers must obtain license from MCC Zone-6 Office for sale of crackers. Stating that getting License and No Objection Certificates from concerned departments is mandatory for all cracker stalls, he said that he will seek inputs from concerned officials on unauthorised erection of cracker stalls.