The Delhi Fire Department has deployed its fire tenders near congested areas in the national capital on Diwali as a precautionary measure, officials said on Monday.
However, the Director of Delhi Fire Service Atul Garg said that they do not expect there will be many incidents as firecrackers have been banned by the Delhi Government. “We made all arrangements to tackle fire incidents and haven’t let our guard down. We are prepared with drones to access high-rise buildings. We expect there won’t be many incidents as firecrackers are banned. Fire tenders deployed near congested areas,” he said.
“We have 64 fire stations in Delhi and additionally we have made around 30 fire posts. These fire posts are made in the selected areas based on the analysis of yearly calls during Diwali. These are made in areas from where the fire station is far away,” he said.
“Most of our officials are working today. Around 23,000 fire workers are on duty today. This is the first Diwali after COVID-19 when people are celebrating so I think we might receive more calls. Pre-COVID when we analyse the data of the last ten years, on average we used to receive 250 to 300 calls on Diwali,” he added.
Despite a complete ban on firecrackers, the fire department received around 152 calls on Diwali last year, which was 25 per cent less compared to 2020.
While addressing a press conference, Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai had said “This year as well, there is a ban on the production, sale, storage and bursting of crackers. Sale or storage of firecrackers in Delhi can be punished with a fine of Rs 5,000 and/or imprisonment for three years.”
The Minister further said strict action will be taken against those bursting crackers.
“Strict action will be taken against those who burst crackers till Diwali. Under section 268 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), there is a provision of a fine of Rs 200 and/or jail for 6 months against those who burst crackers,” he further said.
Meanwhile, ahead of Diwali the air quality of the national capital plunged to the poor category. In such a situation, there is a possibility that it may worsen on the evening of Diwali.
In a bid to reduce vehicular pollution, the Delhi Government has announced the ‘Red Light On Gaadi Off’ campaign.
Under the campaign, public representatives and officials will motivate commuters to turn their vehicles off at red lights in a bid to curb vehicular pollution.
The air quality in the national capital is also affected because of stubble burning in surrounding Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan in the winter.