The Kerala High Court on Thursday allowed low-decibel fireworks display in the night during the ongoing Pooram festival in Thrissur, exempting it from the ban imposed in the wake of Kollam Puttingal temple tragedy on Sunday that claimed 113 lives.
No unauthorised chemicals should be used in the fireworks and the sound level should not exceed 125 decibel, a division bench comprising Justices Thottathil B Radhakrishnan and Justice Anu Sivaraman said in the order.
The bench was hearing a plea by the private Paramekkavu and Thirvambadi Devaswoms, which fund the annual Pooram festival in the premises of the famous Vadakkunnathan Temple in Thrissur, for permission to hold fireworks display. The festival is currently on and will culminate on Apr 18.
While sustained exposure to decibel level below 125 may result in hearing loss, after 125 it may cause pain.
Amid uncertainty over the conduct of famous Thrissur Pooram following the Kollam temple tragedy, Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on Thursday said it would be allowed with strict restrictions and security measures in place, without giving a go by to traditions.
"The Pooram is being celebrated for the last several years. How can we say it cannot be held? But to avoid any kind of tragedy, it will be allowed with strict restrictions and security measures," he told reporters after an All-Party Meeting in Thiruvananthapuram.
"It is a general feeling that the Pooram should be held.
It is not only the feeling of people of Thrissur district but of the entire state. Many feel that there should not be any hurdles to it," he said.
The all-party meeting discussed matters relating to fireworks display in the state in the wake of the Kollam tragedy that claimed 114 lives after the pyrotechnic show at Puttingal Devi temple went awry on April 10.
The government's stand comes amid a day-long protest staged by people of Thrissur demanding holding of the festivities without cutting short any of the age-old traditional practices, including parading of caparisoned elephants and fireworks display.
Asked how the Pooram will be held with restrictions, he said government was of the view that various guidelines and stipulations laid down with regard to Pooram festivities, including parading of elephants and fireworks display, has to be adhered to.
Leader of the Opposition in the state assembly V S Achuthanandan of CPI-M was among those who attended the meeting.