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Saturday, 25 October 2014

Youth raise voice against firecrackers - Bhubaneshwar

 A group of youngsters here are campaigning hard to make people aware about observing an eco-friendly Diwali, at a time when revellers tend to indulge in bursting sound crackers paying little heed to rules.

A woman lights candles ahead of Diwali in Bhubaneswar.

A group of college students under the banner of the United for Social Interests (USI) are visiting parks and market places to interact with the people and appeal to them to restrain from bursting sound crackers.

“The motive behind celebrating this festival is to have fun, but not at the cost of creating inconvenience for other people and polluting the environment. The best way to celebrate Diwali is by lighting up homes in the most innovative way and gorging on good food,” said Tarini Sahoo, a member of USI.

Another group of students of the Utkal University staged street plays, which urge the onlookers to spend time with underprivileged children and senior citizens during the festival.

Members of the Humara Bachpan that carries out campaigns to promote green Diwali organised activities such as mehendi, wall painting, outdoor rangoli, colouring and lighting of lamps among 300 poor children in the city.

“There are a number of environment-friendly ways to celebrate the festival. We should observe it in a peaceful way,” said 25-year-old Shibani Routray, a member of the group.

If Diwali is all about spreading joy, some made that effort to actually walk the talk.

Decorative items made by the poor children were a hit with the customers. Young girls of Ama Vidyalaya, a school for differently-abled children at Barang, made candles that were sent to various firecracker shops and exhibitions for sale. The candles, including the floated and scented varieties, came in various colours and designs and were priced between Rs 10 and Rs 100.

“While some candles looked like a flower, others were in geometrical forms. I found variety in the designs,” said 25-year-old Archana Maharana, a customer.

Chocolates prepared by the physically challenged children of the Open Learning Systems found many takers. The special care home had received bulk orders from individuals and corporate houses this year.

Their speciality includes choco candies of three to four kinds made from cashew, almond and other dry fruits. Packed in colourful wrappers, the chocolate boxes also made for beautiful gifts.

“I buy chocolates from them every year. Not only because they are tasty, but also it gives me immense happiness to do something to boost their confidence. It is better to buy from them than from the market,” said 36-year-old businessman Ajay Pattnaik.

The money earned through the process is used to organise vocational training for the children. 

Source : The Telegraph , 22nd Oct 2014 

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