Delhi's pollution level post-Diwali nearly doubled in comparison to last year as people burst firecrackers before and after the Supreme Court stipulated time frame of 8 pm to 10 pm.
Over 550 cases were registered and more than 300 people arrested on Diwali night for violating the Supreme Court's order on burning of fire crackers, officials said.
Despite the Supreme Courts directives, people in Delhi-NCR on Wednesday continued to burst crackers on Diwali well past the 10 p.m. deadline though the air quality index (AQI) showed a slight improvement over last year.
Traders' body CAIT Wednesday urged the Supreme Court to reconsider its decision banning sale of traditional firecrackers in Delhi-NCR as it will affect livelihood of large number of people.
The Supreme Court clarified that firecrackers other than green crackers will not be sold in the Delhi-NCR region this festival season.
Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan said although less-polluting "green crackers" have been devised and the technology will be shared with the industry soon, it will not be available this Diwali.
India’s capital was covered in a blanket of choking grey air and pollution, with government data showing air quality slumping to “severe” or “very poor” levels in almost all parts of Delhi.
The Supreme Court will pronounce on Tuesday its verdict on the plea for a ban on the manufacture, sale and possession of firecrackers across the country.
The SC on Friday issued notice on a plea seeking a country-wide ban on the manufacture, sale and bursting of firecrackers
It is expected to be a less noisy and less toxic Diwali this year after the Supreme Court imposed a ban on sale of firecrackers in Delhi and the NCR.