Would this Really Reduce Delhi’s Pollution?

With less than two weeks to Diwali, the Supreme Court has banned sale of fireworks in Delhi. As a consequence, traders who had the licenses to sell fireworks will no longer be able to do so.

Delhi has massive problems with pollution. The question is: Would Supreme Court’s order help?

The court’s order applies only on sale, not on the use of fireworks. Those who understand the realities of India know that the decision will either result in black market for fireworks, or at worst people will buy them from adjoining areas of Delhi.

Traders who have stocked themselves with fireworks are now stuck. Did anyone think about the losses they would suffer? These are often very poor people, living at extreme margins of the society. Would they not instead pay bribes to the police to be allowed to sell?

Should the court not have taken the decision to ban much before traders started stocking up? Or is this decision a mere virtue signal, which will have no impact on pollution, but will only harm poor traders—about who no one cares—and increase corruption?

Yes, something needs to be done about Delhi’s pollution. But it seems that Supreme Court’s current decision will likely have done nothing to alleviate the pollution problem, and instead worsened the situation of poor traders and the status of corruption.

Author: Jayant Bhandari.

3 thoughts on “Would this Really Reduce Delhi’s Pollution?

  1. Ashish Goyal says:

    I don’t know what to say sir but I can’t see the way my country is going. Uneducated people are leading this country & if educated person tries to enter in politics, he is being threaten to death.
    I have seen some of your videos on YouTube, if possible please mention some solutions that can be done by young generation like me to help my country.
    Many thanks.

    • Madhusudan Raj
      Madhusudan Raj says:

      Dear Ashish, the world is driven by nothing else but ideas. Good ideas make world a better place for everyone, and bad makes it worst like what is going on today. Behind every action, there is some idea. The battle for changing the world for better is fundamentally a ‘battle of ideas’. This means, if you want to make our world (including India) a better place then you have to first study and learn good ideas, and once you understand them you have to spread them to others. When enough people will be convinced by the right and sound ideas, the world will slowly change. This process is very long though and so it requires life long dedication. My advise to you is to start understanding ideas of Austrian Economics and Libertarianism. They can make our world a better place. Wide reading and study is the only option before you start taking any action.

  2. Gene C says:

    BBC and other international sources have been reporting on bad air in Delhi. Schools closed for a week, etc. The fireworks ban probably helped the situation, but ultimately it was no more than giving a dying man a band-aid.

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