SC advocate Shashank Jha asks people to contact him if harassed by Delhi Police for bursting crackers, offers free legal help

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A crackdown on firecracker sellers and traders by the Delhi Police just ahead of Diwali has triggered massive unrest amongst the masses. DCP outer Delhi, Parvinder Singh in a statement to media on Tuesday had said, “Patrolling will be done at several crowded places. We will file cases against those who would sell or burst crackers despite the ban.”

In response to the supposed ‘security arrangements’ being done by the police, Supreme Court advocate Shashank Shekhar Jha has offered free legal services to anyone who gets harassed by the police for bursting crackers in Delhi. 

Jha quote Tweeting the statement said, “If Police harass you for bursting firecrackers in Delhi even after SC order: Contact me! No Hindus should be harassed since they wouldn’t be knowing of the ingredients of crackers. Will provide legal support to everyone for free.” 

While speaking with OpIndia, Jha said that anyone being harassed or targeted can contact him via Twitter. He also informed that he is in the process of issuing a contact number to allow people to get in touch with him.

“I will take care of the legal expenses of the victim. If multiple people approach us, we will club their cases and approach the Delhi High Court. The victim or petitioner will not incur any expense in this process,” said Jha.

The advocate further said that bursting crackers on Diwali is a religious tradition and that the Modi government had introduced the concept of green crackers in 2018 itself. 

SC says only crackers with Barium salts are banned

The Supreme Court on Friday had said that only those crackers with Barium salts are prohibited.  A bench comprising of Justices MR Shah and AS Bopanna said, “Under the guise of enjoyment, you [manufacturers] cannot play with the lives of citizens.”

“We are not against a particular community. We want to send a strong message that we are here for the protection of fundamental rights of citizens,” the Bench said further. 

It is this order that Jha referred to in his Tweet. 

Delhi Environment minister says ‘no leniency’

Meanwhile, the Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai said that the AAP-led Delhi government would show “zero tolerance” to violations of the firecracker ban.

“In a bid to curb pollution from illegal bursting of firecrackers this Diwali, the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) has directed the police and the SDMs to keep a 24×7 vigil,” Rai said on Tuesday. 

“The Delhi Police and SDMs have been instructed to observe a 24-hour vigil to prevent the pollution caused by the firecrackers, with special attention in the border areas of Delhi. In this regard, the DPCC has issued instructions to the Delhi police and SDMs,” he added further. 

Not just this, the Delhi government has also constituted a special vigilance campaign on border areas of Delhi to ensure no illegal purchase, sale, movement and storage of firecrackers anywhere.

OpIndia Staff: Staff reporter at OpIndia