Image via The Week

Did you know that human beings are capable of creating thousands of tonnes of waste in a single day? That’s what happened this Diwali. Who cares if shredded paper from fireworks makes its way into the waterways? Workers across the nation had to work overtime to clear all the waste, including on the day of the festival, instead of being with friends and family.

debris

Firecracker filth littering a road in Madurai, Tamil Nadu. Image via The Hindu

Oh, and it isn’t easy to clear the debris from the roads, either, because it’s mixed with plastic and other filth. Workers have no choice but to light the stuff on fire, which causes more air pollution and often causes some leftover crackers to go off, leading to injuries. But that’s alright, isn’t it? If one worker goes down, there are plenty of substitutes available.

It’s interesting how people are obsessed with spring-cleaning their homes for Diwali but don’t care a whit about the rubbish they create outside their front door. We buy air fresheners and humidifiers for our cars and homes, but do we make even one tenth the effort to purify the air outside? No, and flouting restrictions on the bursting of firecrackers proves that beyond a doubt.

Diwali is indeed the festival of lights- it puts a spotlight on our hypocrisy.

Posted by Rohan

Rohan Parekh is a writer that is passionate about writing on sustainability because he believes that the world needs to wake up and smell the coffee when it comes to climate change.

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