SC rejects move to ban crackers this Diwali

A complete ban on firecrackers during Diwali will not be imposed, the Supreme Court has said rejecting a plea filed over concerns of increasing air pollution in India’s major cities. Reiterating its 2005 ruling that allows bursting crackers between 6 am and 10 pm, the court asked the government to publish advertisements from October 31 to November 12 warning people about the harmful effects of crackers.

In a plea filed in the name of three toddlers by their parents, the petitioners sought a restriction on bursting firecrackers in the morning and also argued there should be a designated place for bursting crackers. The SC turned down the plea saying people have the right to burn crackers in front of their houses. Also, crackers were not the only cause for air pollution, the apex court said.

Cashless treatment scheme for accident victims

The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MORTH) has launched pilot projects to provide highway road accident victims cashless treatment up to a limit of Rs. 30,000 for the first 48 hours. This will be for the stretches of Gurgaon-Jaipur and Vadodara-Mumbai, both on NH-8 and Ranchi-Mahulia on NH-33.

Under the project, GPS enabled ambulances, connected with a central control room through a toll-free number 1033, will be stationed at distance of 20 km to transport the injured to the nearest hospital for treatment within the ‘golden hour’.

Banks can’t force customers to put cheque in drop box

Banks cannot force customers to deposit cash and cheques in ATMs or drop boxes, say Reserve Bank of India (RBI) guidelines. The Master Circular on Customer Service issued by RBI states that both the drop box facility and the facility for acknowledgement of cheques at regular collection counters should be available to customers.

The guidelines also say that for customer awareness, banks should display a message saying ‘customers can also tender the cheques at the counter and obtain acknowledgement on the pay-in slips’ on the cheque drop box, in English, Hindi and the local language.

Flight tickets if you are dropped from train waiting list


Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has launched a new scheme which allows passengers who have been dropped from a waiting list to get a last minute flight ticket at a competitive price.

Passengers who are on the wait list after the chart preparation are eligible and will receive a mail. They can then log on to to book flight tickets when available – on the same day or next day. Another catch for being eligible is that the date of booking has to be three days or prior to the date of travel.

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