KOCHI: The Kerala High Court on Tuesday granted permission to the committee of the Maradu Kottaram Bhagavathy Temple to conduct fireworks display based on certain conditions. The court allowed holding of the fireworks by limiting them to items emitting light but without heavy sound. The court permitted the temple committee to use 501 barrel crackers (‘kathinas’), 15,000 ordinary crackers (‘olappadakkam’) and 150 ‘flowers’ without heavy sound.

The court passed the order on a petition filed by M R Jayakanth Bhat and four other office-bearers of the temple challenging the Ernakulam District Collector’s order banning fireworks. The court directed the District Collector to ensure that an officer appointed by him takes charge of the premises on the previous day of the fireworks and makes necessary arrangements for safety precautions. The court said the entire work shall be entrusted with the officer who shall issue identity cards to the persons handling the fireworks whose number should not exceed 20.

The Kochi City Police Commissioner should ensure sufficient barricading is done by the temple authorities for the safety of the public. No other authorities other than the authorised officer, police officers and persons numbering 20 to handle the fireworks shall be permitted to enter the barricade where the fireworks are stored. The court asked the district administration to strictly implement the order and file a report before the court immediately after the festival.