Diwali is all about lights and spending time with family and friends. It is also the joy of the victory of Lord Rama over Ravana and giving the value of good over evil to the society.

Over the years, the celebrations have gone extravagant and taken a toll over not only the environment.

Environmental pollution and the safety issues involved in making and bursting firecrackers is a major concern here. During Diwali, firecrackers attribute to severe health issues.

The growing social awareness concerning our environment has prompted several people to come ahead in promoting eco-friendly ways to celebrate Diwali and these are very easy and cost-effective as well.

If you really want to burst crackers then it is best to stick to eco-friendly crackers that emit less smoke, produce sound within the noise limit of 125 dB to 145 dB and also produce more light.

Instead of electric lamps made of non-recyclable plastic and cost heavy on power consumption, you can opt to light the earthen lamps. These can be used multiple times to your taste and requirements, are made from the earth-friendly material, are cost-effective and add a touch of rustic charm to the decorations. Try not to buy the ones that are painted since they are painted with chemical colours. The option of electric lights may seem appealing and hassle-free but in reality, it is the traditional way of celebrating Diwali that actually holds good from all aspects of protecting our own health and that of the environment as well. Also, try avoiding candles since they are just one-time use and are petroleum-based which may release toxins that can affect the quality of air.

You can use natural organic colours or make them at home for creating the beautiful Rangolis instead of chemical colours that are available in the market. You can use rice paste or dry rice flour to make rangoli which later the ants and other small insects can eat. This is how it is done in some villages down south. This is eco-friendly and can be put in the compost bin the next day.

Environment pollution can not be done overnight but it is time to take a step towards eco-friendly practices. Let us all try to keep that in mind this Diwali and reduce our efforts towards causing more harm to our environment.

Diwali is a time for both gratitude and happiness. Avoid crackers this Diwali and spend the evening with music, dance, games, while gorging on delicious food.

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