Special teams formed to inspect safety violations in fireworks units have suspended operations in 70 units that were involved in grave violations. The teams, formed in July, have been reconstituted eight times for inspecting fireworks units and also to monitor illegal cracker units.
The teams had inspected 758 fireworks units in the taluks of Sivakasi, Vembakottai, Sattur, Virudhunagar, Rajapalayam, Srivilliputtur and Aruppukottai. Units found violating safety norms were kept under suspension and locked. However, 49 of those units rectified the shortcomings in implementation of safety norms and were permitted to resume work, Virudhunagar Collector, J. Meghanath Reddy said in a statement.
Meanwhile, notices were issued seeking explanations from 116 units where safety rules were flouted. Six cases were booked under Indian Explosives Act, 1884, for illegally manufacturing crackers in houses and illegally packing fireworks in shops.
The teams are being reconstituted every week to lessen work load and to prevent nexus between the officials and violators. Mr. Meghanath has warned of stringent action, including cancellation of licenses of units found to flout safety norms. He has also warned of criminal action against those involved in illegal manufacturing of crackers. Habitual offenders would be booked under Goondas Act, he said.
Individuals can alert Special Tahsildar (Matches and Fireworks Units Inspection) at 93426-94959 concerning illegal cracker units and violations of safety norms in licensed units.