Brampton Diwali event looks for $200,000 in city budget

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Published March 8, 2023 at 1:22 pm

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Brampton is looking to earmark $200,000 in the upcoming budget for a City-run Diwali celebration later this year.

The City made changes to its fireworks bylaw last year following a record number of complaints about personal-use fireworks during Diwali celebrations last October.

The new rules ban the use, sale, and purchase of fireworks within the City limits, but will also see Brampton work with local partners to develop a City-run Diwali event to celebrate the annual festival of lights.

And according to a report going to Council on Thursday, City staff are looking for a budget of $200,000 to put on the inaugural event this year. Brampton City Council is expected to finalize the budget on Thursday and, if approved, would see the City organize and run the event on Diwali in November.

Fireworks complaints during the annual festival of lights celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains in 2021 prompted Brampton City Council to explore a complete ban on fireworks in Brampton, but the proposal was shelved until last year.

The City said there were a total of 1,004 fireworks-related service requests during Diwali on Oct. 24 last year, far surpassing the more than 650 fireworks calls made during Diwali celebrations in 2021. Just days after the celebrations, a Change.org petition calling for the City of Brampton “to put a cap on firework days and times or a complete firework ban” began circulating online.

Peel Regional Police also responded to a fight between 400 to 500 people celebrating Diwali. Video of the incident was viewed more than 966,000 times on TikTok before it was removed.

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