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Over 860 factories in the country's fireworks manufacturing hub, went on a strike yesterday, demanding an amendment to the act to exempt their produce from its ambit.
They also sought an expeditious hearing by the Supreme Court of a petition seeking a series of steps to curb air pollution, including a ban on sale, possession and bursting of firecrackers across the country.
The manufacturers said dealers were not paying advances for ordering fireworks in view of the pendency of the petition and this affected the working capital required by the industry.
Industry sources said the indefinite closure would affect the livelihood of eight lakh workers employed directly and indirectly in the units in and around this town which met 85 per cent of the country's fireworks requirement.
The All India Federation of Fireworks Associations functionaries said for several decades the traders from north India used to pay an advance which would work out to more than 75 per cent of the working capital required by the units.
The traders/dealers were not paying an advance as they feared that the court could ban fireworks across the country.
Besides seeking a ban on firecrackers across the country, the petition has sought directions for environment-friendly, cleaner fuels and implementation of regulations on dust from construction activities.
The apex court had on October 9 said that no firecrackers would be sold in the Delhi-NCR during Diwali this year while banning its sale till November 1.