Chandigarh, October 29
Diwali this
year was much quieter compared to last year. Environmentalists say that every year during the festive season, especially on Diwali, the air and noise pollution levels increase, but this year, Diwali was not as noisy.

“There was a mixed pattern of increase and decrease in noise levels. At some places, there was a downfall in the noise level. This may be due to higher awareness about the adverse effects of pollution among the public and the anti-cracker rallies by students, which were supported by the administration,” a senior official of the Chandigarh Pollution Control Committee (CPCC) said.

Every year, the CPCC monitors the impact of crackers at its centres in the city.

Also, the sale of crackers went down by more than 50 per cent this year. According to shopkeepers and wholesalers, a major part of their stocks did not sell. “We are facing heavy losses because of it,” Ashok Khurana, a shopkeeper at Attawa village, said.

Some shopkeepers were seen selling crackers below the cost price. “These crackers cost me Rs 10 each. I tried to sell those for Rs 15 yesterday but didn’t get any buyers. So, I am trying to exhaust my stock by selling them at Rs 7,” he said.

The reason for the low sales of crackers is also being attributed to the rise in prices. The price of crackers soared by more than 20 per cent this Diwali.

“People were disappointed with the high prices of crackers and the festival also came at the end of the month when the family budget is usually taken care of,” another shopkeeper said.

Source: Himani Chandel Tribune New Service