Celebrate but go easy and safe this Eid

Festivals are the times when some people tend to go overboard resulting in injuries and fatalities, warn authorities and experts. Stressing on the importance of obeying security rules at all times and abstaining from mischiefs, they said, “This will help everyone to enjoy the holidays”. Starting today, the Royal Oman Police (ROP) will tighten patrolling in residential areas, parks and other congested areas to ensure that no untoward incidents take place during the Eid al Fitr celebrations.

On the occasion of festivals, ROP regularly issues warnings against speeding, use of firecrackers and shooting in the air as part of the celebrations.
“Still miscreants try to bring in firecrackers to the country. A tight vigil is in force at all borders and both air and seaports to foil any attempt to smuggle firecrackers”, said an official at the ROP.
Anyone who is found guilty of trading in fireworks will be slapped with a jail term of three months and handed down a fine not exceeding RO 300.
The ROP, represented by the Directorate-General of Customs, takes strict action against smugglers, traders and users of firecrackers.
The official also said that shooting during festivals from a licensed or non-licensed firearms, except for a call in distress, is an offence.
“Those who use firearms without being in distress or set off firecrackers or fire rockets which can ignite fires and explosions will be fined and jailed”, he said.
He pointed out that those licensed to carry firearms are bound by a clause not to use their arms in places inhabited or intended for inhabitation.
In several cases children are found to be using firecrackers, especially during celebrations.
Commenting on the use of firecrackers during festivals, experts said that parents should be blamed for children using firecrackers.
“Perhaps the indulgence by parents needs to be checked,” said Dr Bipin Raj, an educationist, adding, “Parents must show responsibility and admonish children from using firecrackers”.
Use of firecrackers result in burnt skin, loss of hearing and eye injuries.
Meanwhile, the ROP also warned against speeding while travelling to distant tourist destinations like Salalah.
“Looking at the high number of road accidents reported during Eid holidays, drivers should take extra care”, the ROP officials said.
Some drivers engage in stunts on public roads, which can lead to fatal accidents. “Performing stunts and similar activities is a crime and the law stipulates strict punishment for the offender,” the official said.
The official said that people should take care of their children during trips to beaches to prevent drowning. “People must be extra cautious and should not allow their children to swim in high tide. Children should always be accompanied by elders,” he said.

SAMUEL KUTTY