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Coronavirus in Mumbai: BMC bans firecrackers during Diwali with brief reprieve for Laxmi Pujan

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has imposed a ban on bursting of firecrackers during Diwali, citing the effects of smoke and other pollutants on the health of COVID-19 patients.

November 09, 2020 / 05:15 PM IST

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on November 8 reiterated that bursting of firecrackers during Diwali is not permitted within its jurisdiction due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

In an order, the BMC said bursting of firecrackers in both public and private premises will remain banned. The corporation and Mumbai Police will enforce this order strictly and violators will be prosecuted.

However, the order states that people will be allowed to burst a limited number of small firecrackers such as ‘fuljhadi’ and ‘anar’ for a specific period of time in the evening on November 14 – the day of Laxmi Pujan. This would be allowed only within private premises such as compounds of housing societies.

Bursting any kind of firecrackers has been prohibited in areas linked to hotels, clubs, gymkhanas, commercial areas and other such establishments.

The municipal corporation also urged citizens to abide by physical distancing norms and follow other safety protocols related to COVID-19 – the disease caused the novel coronavirus.

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It was reported on November 6 that the BMC had imposed a ban on bursting of firecrackers in public places this Diwali, citing the effects of smoke and other pollutants on the health of COVID-19 patients.

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On November 8, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray in his address to the state, had said that his government was not imposing any ban on firecrackers but urged citizens to observe self-discipline and celebrate a firecracker-free Diwali.

Thackeray said that 15 days after Diwali would be crucial as COVID-19 cases may surge due to rise in air pollution levels.

As of November 9, Maharashtra had reported 17.19 lakh COVID-19 cases – the highest in India. Of these, 15.77 lakh patients had recovered. About 97,000 cases remained active. The death toll in the state due to the COVID-19 outbreak stood at over 45,200. The areas under the BCM, officially known as the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM), had reported 2.64 lakh COVID-19 cases.

Both, the city and the state, have shown a steady downward trend in new cases being reported on a daily basis. But concerns remain over a possible resurgence of the health crisis.

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first published: Nov 9, 2020 01:07 pm