Y.S. RANA,CHANDIGARH—Commercialization of festivals acquires dominance in their celebrations and festivals have lost their traditional sheen as people seem to be fast discarding the traditional ways of celebrations that once were the most popular especially in the rural areas.
Every year, Diwali the festival of lights turns out to be nightmarish for many all over the country. About 100 persons, who turned to local hospitals in Chandigarh with eyes or burns injury they have received during Diwali night. Doctors said many of them could lose vision permanently. Out of these, 40 people received serious eye injury; 10 burn injury and seven persons suffered from noise trauma to the ears causing deafness and tinnitus. Fire incidents were reported from 31 places.
On the other hand, the police department has stated that the whole week up to Diwali police were kept on its toes with 271 calls received at police control room (PCR) complaining of brawls and bursting of crackers beyond 10 p.m. limit prescribed by the Chandigarh Administration’s order.
Last year 161 received injuries caused by crackers compared to 123 and 150 in 2009 and 2008 respectively on Diwali night.
Dr R.K Bansal, GMCH-32, Chandigarh said, ”Crackers are the integral parts of Diwali not only cause air and noise pollution but also pass an array of health risks.” The high decibel levels caused high blood pressure, heart attack, hypertension, stress and other long-term health problems, he added.
Normal decibel level for humans is 60 dB but most of the crackers during Diwali emit more than 80dB, a level that can cause hearing loss and adverse affect on children, senior citizens and pregnant women.
Noise can cause sensori-neural hearing loss or nerve loss. Many cases of tinnitus (constant ringing sound in the ears) perforation of ear drums blocked ear stated an ENT doctor. When the noise is too loud, it begins to kill the nerve endings in the inner ear. “Increase in exposure time to loud noise, more and more nerve endings are destroyed,” he said.
Also, increase in the level of suspended particles also leads to a slew of ear, nose and throat problems. The air becomes thick with SPM and causes headache and reduces mental agility and vulnerable for heart, lung and central nervous systems.
While talking to Ravinder Talwar, Director, Banyan Public School and environmentalist posed a question- Should we continue to such festivity, spare a thought for the health risks the Diwali poses? “We should preserve our rich traditions of celebration of festivals as these are our heritage wealth,” he said. EOM./