Fars news agency, affiliated with the revolutionary guards, in an article published on March 18, the day of Fire festival, pleaded with the youth not to participate in the celebration and wrote: “In the Fire festival ceremony, using the firecrackers and making noises in many cities causes the birds to flee. Some of the smoke of the firecrackers goes into the eyes of the birds and they can no longer fly. Also some of them are affected by the wave of the explosions and flee the cities where people are jubilant.
We should note that birds cannot talk to express these things to humans as to how they have been affected by waves of explosions. It should not be that with the excuse of Fire festival, we have acute sound pollution and to endanger the greenery of the country. Because of the sharp lights given off in the cities, the insects are attracted to these lights and destroyed and hence the birds are left without food…”
At the same time in the recent days, the Iranian government has been reporting the discovery of all kinds of firecrackers and the arrest and imprisonment of a large number of people. Ariya news agency of March 18 quoted Mohammadreza Mirzaii, the Security Commander of Semnan Province (central Iran), as saying: “Since the outset of confiscation of the explosive material, 210697 firecrackers of all kinds have been discovered in the province.”
He said: “To prevent these festivities, many meetings have been held with different bodies such as the revolutionary guards, the Ministry of Education, the Radio and Television, and the municipalities; and 25000 brochures and posters related to Fire festival have been distributed in the province. Nevertheless, if people are arrested during the Fire festival, they will be sent off to prison. So far, 115 people have been arrested and 453 shops have been searched.”
Since every year this ceremony is turned into an uprising by the youth against the Iranian regime, a nationwide campaign has been announced to control the youth. Similarly yesterday, Mostafa Ariya, mayor of Shiraz (a city of tourist attraction in central Iran), said: “All security, military and control measures have been envisioned for Fire festival. If people are arrested in this ceremony, they will stay in prison till the end of the New Year holidays that start on March 20 or even longer. We shall be firm in confronting this ceremony so that Fire festival will not turn into Fire festival.” He went on to advise the people to be mournful on these days due to religious excuses.