The Supreme Court categorically refused to ban people from bursting firecrackers during Diwali, saying it might be "dangerous" to infringe into the common man's right to enjoy his religious festivities.
Refusing the >plea made by three toddlers, who turned to the Supreme Court for relief against the air pollution caused by firecrackers during Diwali, a Bench led by Chief Justice H.L. Dattu said: "the court cannot stop people from bursting crackers in front of their homes."
The Chief Justice observed, "If we try to stop, he will say it is my right. Such a ban will lead to a dangerous situation. Chaos."
The court dismissed arguments made by senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi to prescribe a time limit and even designate public spaces where people can burst crackers.
"Sorry. We cannot tell everybody to go to some Nehru maidan and burst crackers," the Chief Justice said.
The Bench, however, pulled up the Centre for not publishing advertisements widely in the media warning of health hazards and to follow regulations concerning noise pollution.
The court further reiterated its 2005 order prescribing time limit to avoid causing disturbance to the public during "night time".
In the 2005 order, the court had defined "night time" as the hours between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.