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SC holds firm on Delhi cracker ban, says don’t communalise it

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday refused to modify the ban order on crackers in Delhi-NCR and asked to not to politicise the court’s verdict.

“We are pained at communal remarks on the verdict. Do not politicise or give a communal angle to the ban,” the court said.

The court directed the Delhi Police to implement its order banning the sale of firecrackers in the Delhi-NCR.

It also refused to restrict people from bursting crackers on Diwali. “People will burst firecrackers which they have purchased before the order banning its sale,” the court said.

On Wednesday, traders with temporary licenses approached the apex court seeking a relaxation of the ban on the sale of firecrackers in the national capital and the NCR.

Lawyers for the petitioner told the apex court that after the lifting of the November 2016 ban on September 12 this year, they had bought firecrackers for sale but the October 9 ban had caused them harm.

A bench headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi where the matter was mentioned said they would discuss it with Justice AK Sikri who has given the October 9 ruling before listing it.

On October 9, ahead of Diwali, the Supreme Court upheld the suspension of licenses for sale of firecrackers in the national capital.

The ban on sale and stocking of firecrackers will be in effect until November 1, 2017.

Last year, the top court suspended all licences which “permit the sale of fireworks, wholesale and retail within the territory of NCR”.

The immediate effect of the order was also made clear by the top court which ordered “forthwith” suspension of temporary licences issued by the police for sale of firecrackers pursuant to the order of September 12.

A bench headed by Justice AK Sikri said that the November 11, 2016, order suspending the licences “should be given one chance to test itself” to see if there would be a positive effect of this, particularly during Diwali.

The apex court in 2005 had also directed that there should be a complete ban on bursting sound-emitting firecrackers between 10 pm and 6 am.

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