Residents of Puducherry expressed delight as the Union Territory has allowed the sale of firecrackers at low prices ahead of Diwali, and Papsco, a government agency, has set up shops across the UT to sell the firecrackers at subsidised rates on Monday.
Papsco is providing firecrackers at a 75 per cent subsidy to the general public.
Diwali in Puducherry was muted and low-key affairs last year due to COVID-19-induced lockdown and the earlier Congress government did not allow the sale of firecrackers in the UT for almost two years.
The government gave permission for the Diwali celebration was allowed only after Puducherry achieved 80 per cent vaccination.
Meanwhile, the government has also arranged free vaccination at Indira Gandhi Government Hospital.
Muthukrishnan, Papsco Director, told ANI, "The government has decided to avail firecrackers at 70 per cent subsidy for the general public. Almost after two years, the government has allowed the sale of firecrackers in the Union Territory. We have also set up free vaccination camps at government hospitals."
Vignesh, a resident, said, "We are really happy that the government has allowed the sale of crackers in Puducherry. Due to non-availability of firecrackers in Puducherry, we celebrated a muted Diwali for the past three years. With the coronavirus cases receding in the UT, the government has allowed celebrating the festival and we welcome it." (ANI)