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Friday, November 9, 2012

Celebrating Deepavali - fireworks stalls at Island Grounds this year

Deepavali, the festival of Lights enthuses everyone and is celebrated all over the Country with so much of enthusiasm.  People wear new clothes, eat lot of sweets and celebrate with crackers.  For decades now, we have had the pleasure of celebrating Deepavali with all its abundant fervour.  The very thought of the festival would enthuse – as it would provide everything in abundance – sweets, visiting and sharing with friends and relatives, watching movies and more….

Fire crackers – the small explosives designed to produce noise and the eye-capturing fireworks – both on the ground and on the air have captivated people.   Every year you get to hear newer names – this year, they say AK47, Break dance, Golden Bonanza, Mumbai Indians, Oh Calcutta are some of the names quoted in the circles as latest wonders……… 

The festivity could be felt in the air even before a fortnight, when one walks either in T Nagar area, where every shop be it selling Gold, silver or clothes – are overcrowded – the entire area would be flowing with people jostling to buy more and more.  If you are in the Parrys Corner or Flower Bazaar area to be precise, you can gauge the mood of people buying crackers.  All roads would lead to shops selling fire crackers of various manufacturers including – Standard, National, Sri Kaliswari, Aiyan ….. – you can see hundreds of shops at Badrian Street, Malaya Perumal Street, Anderson street – every other shop is a Cracker shop – still all do roaring business.  

Somehow one gets a feeling that there have been attempts to somehow dampen the spirits of Deepavali – as every year, we hear of more and more restrictions from various Governmental authorities.  Earlier, some hue and cry was raised about child labour in the fire works manufacturing – it the concern was real, why the same was not raised in candle and other things – where also child labour is involved.  Then, some start talking about the pollution control.  Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) has issued guidelines to ensure that high-decibel firecrackers do not cause trouble to the public.  Then there is the Supreme Court guidelines,  which bans  bursting crackers between 10pm and 6am.  

Can any of these authorities think of a similar ban on say – sale of liquor, at least restricting the timing or say screening  of cinema etc.,

This year there is another impediment.  The Madras high court on Tuesday refused to allow setting  up shops in the Flower Bazaar area this Diwali. All wholesale and retail traders should sell firecrackers at Island Grounds, where temporary structures have been erected and trained police personnel posted, the Court said.      The first bench comprising Chief Justice M Y Eqbal and Justice T S Sivagnanam, dismissed petitions filed by 11 dealers of firecrackers.     

It is contended that cracker shops should not be allowed in the narrow lanes and bylanes of Flower bazaar and hence shifted to a safer area – Island grounds.  Though there have been similar pleas in earlier years, this is the first year, when permission has not been granted by Police.  

With no other option available, the cracker dealers have now shifted to Island Grounds – if you are to search for one near Munroe Statue, in Anna Salai, you sure, would be disappointed.  Go to the entrance near War memorial and buy as many as you wish to.  It is for sure that any such move nor the spiralling prices would ever dampen the spirit of people  - people are too willing and raring to purchase crackers and alight the sky with flower pots and dazzling ones.  

Come let us celebrate Deepavali with crackers and beautiful fireworks

Happy Deepavali to all

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

1 comment:

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