‘Boom! Boom! Boom!’.. the toddler shouted with glee! ‘Diwali is finally here.’ Mamma ,we must get lots of crackers. It has to be more than last year. Half for me half for Puggo’. ‘Let’s light the crackers now. ..Puggo come over…… Here boy. No…. come here. Mumma puggo is not coming out from under the bed!’ The little boy looked lost as his ever active cute fluffy pet dog retreated more into the dark silent confines of the bed. Everyone of his friends were out in the field lighting crackers and celebrating. And here Puggo was behaving strangely.
Life at that moment was not fair for the little kid. Just as a fat tear started rolling down his chubby cheek, BOOM, went another cracker followed closely by the sorrowful whining of Puggo. He looked with shining eyes to the unopened packets of crackers and back towards the shadowy respite of Puggo and made a monumentous decision. ’mumma can you give away the crackers or burn them yourselves. Puggo is afraid. He does not like crackers. I will stay with him so he is not afraid anymore.’.. his mother gave a faint knowing smile, illuminating a proud heart as the foggy Sulphur tainted air started permeating into the room, neighbourhood and over our country.
For every Indian, Diwali has become associated with insanely loud and big crackers with each year surpassing the other. It may appear pleasing to some. But are we actually making it enjoyable for everyone? Sadly the truth is no. The increasing magnitude of crackers not only come with fire hazards or physical risks, the toxins released into the air are making it difficult for everyone to breathe. A lot of our loved ones, including our furry friends in and around our house dread this time of the year.
If a little kid can understand and take a stand for the safety of his near and dear ones, why not us. Lets celebrate a safe and clean diwali. Light diyas, candles and silent colourful crackers. Let’s bask in the glory of rangolis and laddus, among laughter and well being of everyone, rather than the cries and discomfort in poisonous air . Make a stand for a clean, safe and happy diwali, in its truest form.