Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Humongous Hypocrisy Behind the Cracker Ban

The recent debate on the cracker ban in Delhi as with just about everything else has proved to be contentious and controversial. Chetan Bhagat picked up cudgels on behalf of the beleaguered fireworks industry, though every time he tweets, it works against whatever he is espousing. In the cacophony of voices that have been raised for and against the issue, as always it is reason that has been silenced. 

            Supposedly the ban on the sale of firecrackers in the capital city is to ascertain whether this can make a palpable difference to the dangerous levels of pollution in Delhi. Needless to say, this decision is most certainly going to prove inconclusive and ineffectual simply because this simplistic measure fails to tackle the root causes that led to such a deplorable situation in the first place. People burst crackers only during the Diwali holidays and probably during the occasional wedding or party. But thanks to the relentless smear campaign against the fireworks industry and the little town where I live, which is reeling from crippling losses and may never recover, this is hardly a regular occurrence and the finger of blame can’t be pointed solely at sparklers and chakras.
Let us turn our attention instead towards the major causes of air pollution, though the aetiology behind Delhi’s affliction is hard to pinpoint. However, we do know enough. Vehicular pollution is a major offender and the solution of course would be to use public transportation, car – pooling and avoid driving and flying as much as possible. But I simply cannot see a future where people walk to work or cycle to get their grocery shopping done after those environment – destroying, gas – guzzling vehicles are banned for good, can you?
 The umpteen industrial processes that have the unhappy end result of spewing that toxic looking black smoke into the atmosphere, the burning of agricultural, factory and just about any waste are eco miscreants as well. But of course, we are not freaks to stop progress in its tracks and roll back the industrial revolution, so that we can go back to living like tree hugging hippies. We are cultured people and in India we believe in underpaying the help to keep our houses sparkling clean and dump our trash outside but we certainly cannot shell out for the expensive process of treating wastes and disposing it responsibly. However, while holidaying on foreign shores, we are willing to rant on Facebook about our stupid government that has failed to give us sanitary living conditions and has forced us to endure the unsightly squalor of the squatters in slums.
Tobacco is a proven, lethal source of air pollution but why should we ban the cancer stick and incur the wrath of a gazillion billion dollar industry when we can simply force telly viewers and the movie theatre crowd to listen to Rahul Dravid’s cautionary voice about the evils of smoking with graphic pics of tumours in extreme close up?  Our refrigerators, fans, air – conditioners, room fresheners and even the paint on our walls contain chemicals that have not helped the cause of the much lamented hole in the ozone layer. Surprisingly all these products are endorsed by our revered celebrities who then exhort us from their twitter or instagram accounts while reclining within the cool confines of their fancy, imported cars to celebrate Diwali without those pesky fireworks which are the bane of the environment.
The thing is we all care about our creature comforts far more than the possibility of a tragic catastrophe of apocalyptic proportions in the future. So we are not going to give up our cars, cigarettes, or any of the by – products of the industrial revolution that has made our lives so much easier. Instead, we will be hypocrites and voice our support for the cracker ban across social media so that we can feel better about destroying the world.




Thats a grreat article.. an innocent industry is being slain treacherously for none of its fault. The industry, Sivakasi and the 8 lakh dependents hereabouts have lost their Faith on the System. A system called Democracy built on the four Pillars - Parliament, Government, Judiciary and the Media among other things . The pillar called Government is already weak and shaking with the lethargic and corrupt ministers and officials. The parliament does not care whether the laws legislated by it are respected by the Govt and the Judiciary. The Judiciary pillar wants to take the place of parliament and Government. It inclines and shifts places unthoughtful of the consequences by its dubious ways of judicial over-reach. Why and How the SC bench was changed for the last hearing, what were the arguments and inferences in the 9 earlier hearings by Js Madan Lokur Bench, what wad heard on a sigle sitting by the unknown new Bench of Js AK Sikri, the point-to-point tabulation of differences between the Orders of 12/09/17 and 09/10/17 - will all make anybody lose their Faith on the Apex court.
Lot to do to save this industry, if it can be so saved.

Only fireworks haters come before the court. The industry os seen as an interested party. Where are ppl who want fireworks? where are the ppl who call this their relgious and cultural right?

Manufacturing fireworks past 60 years in Sivakasi - the 4th generation.

ரத்தினகிரி said...

Well, if you want to stop pollution, you can't live in a house built with Cement. Period. Can you do that?!

Then why we ban only fireworks? It is simple math! Can we ban a 3000000 crore industry? No way! If public can be satisfied that if we ban a 3000 industry and the world will be green, they why not ban that? But it will never be green. That is for sure.

Those who want to stop fireworks, had never visited Sivakasi and see how green the fireworks factories are.

Media is for hype, breaking news, TRP and from today onwards we don't worry about the damn fireworks, till the next Diwali. :)