Hyderabad: The Supreme Court on Friday modified the order of Telangana High Court which imposed a complete and immediate ban on the sale and use of firecrackers across the state during Diwali to fall in line with the directions imposed by the National Green Tribunal(NGT) on November 9.

According to NGT, the cities/towns where air quality is 'moderate' or below, only green crackers be sold and the timings for use and bursting of crackers be restricted to two hours during the festivals, like Diwali, Chatt, New year/Christmas Eve.

The tribunal also said that if nothing is specified by the state, timing will be 8 to 10 pm on Diwali.

According to Telangana Pollution Control Board data, the air quality in Hyderabad, Nalgonda, Patancheru and Sangareddy is poor. Accordingly, there will be ban on firecrackers in these districts.
"All concerned with the state of Telangana must comply with the directions in a letter in spirit. We are conscious of the fact that the Respondents are not served but in view of the peculiar situation and urgency involved, the impugned order stands modified in line with the NGT directions issued on November 9, 2020," said Supreme Court.
The NGT order is on the pattern of direction by the Supreme Court in 2019. "We are applying the order to areas moderately polluted or below air quality due to aggravated effects during COVID-19," said NGT in its order.
Earlier today, Telangana Fire Works Dealers Association has challenged the Telangana High Court decision to ban sale and use of firecrackers during Diwali, in the Supreme Court. Telangana High Court had directed the state government to impose a ban on the sale and use of firecrackers during Diwali 2020. A Special Leave Petition has been moved in the Supreme Court by Advocate-on-Record Somanadri Goud Khatam on behalf of the Association.

"The Petitioner Association is seriously prejudiced by the aforesaid order of the Telangana High Court and therefore, seeks the permission of the Supreme Court to file the present Special Leave Petition." the petitioners said.

They informed the Supreme Court that they are seriously affected by the aforesaid order. "In spite of the Petitioner Association being a proper and necessary party, the said order has been passed without making the Petitioner Association a party to the said proceedings and without considering the impact the order would have on the livelihood of the said members,", they said.

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