KAKINADA: Officials of East Godavari are making arrangements to ensure that people of the district celebrate their Diwali on November 14 in a safe manner with reduced pollution levels in view of Covid-19 pandemic.
Officials have laid down strict rules and are sensitising people to celebrate the festival with lights rather than a sound and smoke to reduce pollution levels to the maximum. Officials have not allowed opening of permanent cracker manufacturing units after the blast at a manufacturing unit in Vetlapalem. In view of Diwali, they now say licenses will be issued only if the manufacturers strictly comply with guidelines. Manufacturers are unhappy with the new guidelines.
District collector D. Muralidhar Reddy said East Godavari is yet to fully recover from Covid-19 pandemic. Under the circumstances, people should celebrate the festival only by lighting lamps. Bursting of crackers would lead to smoke, which would aggravate breathing problems and be dangerous for people already suffering from Covid-19.
Joint collector G. Lakshmisha said divisional and mandal level committees have been formed consisting of fire, police and revenue officials. They will ensure that firecracker manufactures in the district comply with the strict guidelines. Only four to five manufacturing have been issued licenses so far.
Lakshmisha said strict instructions have been issued to temporary cracker sellers to conduct business following the Covid-19 protocols like wearing masks, ensuring social distancing and using sanitisers. Like in the past, all shops will not be allotted at one place. They will be spread out and only a limited number of them will be allowed to open in view of Coronavirus....