45 firecrackers for CNY [NSTTV]

JOHOR BARU: Evil spirits are set to get the fright of their lives when the clock strikes midnight and Chinese New Year is ushered in from tonight.

Malaysians ushering in the Year of the Wood Dragon have been spoilt for choice as massive number of stalls have sprouted all over selling fireworks of various kinds, many that could rival those used during federal level celebrations.

Fireworks are usually launched in the sky as soon as the clock strikes 12 on Chinese New Year's Eve, to celebrate the coming of the year.

Some also choose to light firecrackers before having their big family reunion dinner customarily held on the evening of the new year's eve.

According to beliefs, the loud sounds from firecrackers and fireworks drives away evil spirits, and the person who launches the first firework of the new year would have good luck.

On the morning of the Chinese New year, families set off firecrackers in front of their homes to symbolise good luck throughout the whole year.

Customs director-general Datuk Anis Rizana Mohd Zainudin said the government has approved the import and sale of 45 types of Happy Boom and Pop Pop firecrackers and fireworks (bunga api) for the festive season.

She said those importing such items were required to obtain permits and licences from the respective district police headquarters.

This was in accordance with the Customs Order (Prohibition of Import) 2023, requiring importers to obtain license from the police, as stipulated under the Explosives Act 1957.

Anis said the Home Ministry had conditionally granted approval for companies to import, store, and trade firecrackers and fireworks under the Explosives Act 1957 (Act 207) and the Explosives Substances Regulations 1923.

"The police, meanwhile, had provided guidelines for importing and trading Happy Boom and Pop-pop Fireworks for public sale during the festive seasons.

"The guidelines are to ensure compliance with safety regulations.

"It also provides guidelines on the types of explosive materials, fireworks, firecrackers, procedures for applying import and business licences as well as a list of 36 types of Happy Boom and Pop-pop fireworks and nine types of Happy Boom fireworks for public sale during the festive season," she said.

The government had last year agreed to legalise fireworks and firecrackers in the country to put a halt to the smuggling of these items.

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