Cracker injury cases reported to Diwali City Bird Hospital are significantly lower this year than last year.
Officials at Charity Birds Hospital in Sadar Bazar in Gurgaon said only 10 such cases were reported this year, up from 60 last year. Sadar Bazar Hospital is the only such facility in the city. Doctors have said that the reduction in bird injury this Diwali is important and remarkable.
Experts at the hospital pointed out that since the Supreme Court’s ban on the sale of firecrackers was in effect and the Punjab and Haryana high court had also set a three-hour limit for the firecrackers burst on Diwali, the air quality in the city was significantly better that day than in previous years. They attributed the improved air quality and reduced injury to birds and animals from crackers to increased public awareness of pollution and the risks to birds and pets on Diwali.
“We admit that most of the birds suffer from burns and dehydration during the festival. Birds such as pigeons, maynas, and crows suffer the most as they live close to human habitat. This year we have received significantly fewer injured and sick birds, ”said Raj Kumar, doctor at Charity Birds Hospital.
He also pointed out that since the air quality on Diwali was better than last year and the use of crackers was much less, injuries to birds and pets were minimal. “The birds are taking medication and will take less than three days to recover,” he added.
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Birds admitted to the facility suffer from less appetite and depression due to the noise generated by firecrackers during Diwali.
Residents of DLF Phase 2, Sector 4, Palam Vihar admitted injured birds they picked up from the roadsides a day after Diwali. “We might have more cases of injured birds in the next two or three days,” Kumar said.
Likewise, reports of dog injuries were also much lower than in previous years, animal rights activists said.
“This year, after Diwali, the number of injured pets and animals left has dropped dramatically due to the firecracker restriction,” said Amit Chaudhery, president of People’s for Animals, an NGO that works to raise awareness of cruelty to animals.