Kerala HC bans high decibel firecrackers at night

Kochi, April 12 (IANS) Two days after a fire tragedy in a temple killed 110 people, the Kerala High Court on Tuesday ordered a ban on exploding high decibel firecrackers at night.

Fireworks displays during the day too should not exceed the decibel levels of 125-145, said a division bench of Justice Thottathil B. Radhakrishnan and Justice Anu Sivaraman.

The court came down heavily on Kerala Police for failing to do their duty on Sunday when a massive blaze and explosion caused by fireworks led to the death of 111 people at a temple in Kollam district.

The judges wanted to know if the probe by the Crime Branch into the conflagration was enough or whether the Central Bureau of Investigation should probe the tragedy.

The devaswom bench treated the letter written by Justice V. Chitambaresh of the Kerala High Court as a public interest litigation in the wake of the tragedy at the Puttingal Devi temple in Paravur town of Kollam district that left 111 people dead and over 350 others injured.

The bench asked if the upcoming all-party meeting on April 14 to discuss the tragedy and to frame guidelines of firecrackers display would be of any use.

The bench also asked to see if there was involvement of anti-national forces, and asked all the parties to submit a detailed affidavit on all aspects. It said the matter would be taken up again on Thursday.

The court’s directive comes at a time when the week-long Thrissur Pooram festival is going on and whose culmination is marked by a grand fireworks display.

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