The fire crackers went off, sparklers sizzled and the homes were decorated with the delight of festivity. Everything was just usual this Diwali, except for the fact that the high noise this year was a little subdued. The high decibel crackers set off in apparently low proportion this year, compared to what was witnessed last year.
This Diwali, Nagpur Today team visited various areas to gauge the intensity of sound and smoke from the surrounding. It showed that most of the citizens opted for the low noise crackers this year over the crackers which explode with big sound. Moreover, the amount of crackers burnt this year in the city too saw remarkable downtrend.
Sources said the price factor remained one of the prominent reasons behind people picking up fewer and low noise crackers. Though it helped little in improving the condition of air pollution, there has been noticeably low sound pollution last night.
The smoke that emanated from most of the light producing crackers like flower pots, sparklers, ground chakkars and butterflies (a variety of light producing cracker that swing around with flash of colors) made the sky almost choked between 8 pm and 9 pm on Thursday. Interestingly, the sound pollution level was remarkably low around this time.
Environmentalists suggest this year citizens across Nagpur made limited approach towards buying crackers. Barring the few who went on to splurge big moolah on fire crackers, majority of citizens went in for restricted buying, thanks to the whopping rise in the price of fire crackers this year.
Says a cracker seller on condition of anonymity, “If you talk about pricing of fire crackers, it is a blind game altogether. There is no limit of margin of profit in this deal. A pack of crackers actually costing Rs 50 may be sold at as high as Rs 300 to Rs 400, depending upon the customers they fetch. This year citizens discouraged such prices by buying fewer crackers just to fulfill the traditional norms. Owing to this trend, the pollution level goes down in city, with fewer crackers burnt this Diwali.”
Experts see the trend as the good sign as the both the air and sound pollution, particularly the latter, have grown enormously in Nagpur and excessive use of fire crackers could only worsen the situation. Every year post Diwali, many animals and birds also suffer the adverse effects of increased noise and air pollution. The green environs too have to bear the brunt of such activities. “So it is sound beginning of healthy festivities,” said an environmentalist.
The noise levels might have gone down this Diwali night, still there remains a long way to go before we completely shun burning of such fire crackers which not only causes harm to our family but the animal and plant life as well.