A 21-month-old baby, her mother and grandmother have approached the National Green Tribunal alleging that the activities at a private school in their neighbourhood was causing noise and air pollution and had hence become a health hazard for residents.
The appellants are residents of Ashok Vihar Phase IV, and have approached the court to get DAV Public School shifted out from their residential colony. They have also sought direction to various other authorities, like the Union ministry of environment and forests, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and the Delhi Police, to ensure that the school shows restraint in their use of loudspeakers, bells, whistles, amplifiers and drums.
The baby, Arshia Khatri, along with her mother Parul Sharma, claimed before the court that she was suffering from irritability and sleep disorder because of the pollution caused by the school.
Advocate Meena Chaudhary Sharma, the child’s grandmother and the co-counsel on the case, argued that the entire area had been declared a silent zone because of the school, but the neighbours were troubled because of the noise in the area.
“Beating of drums, blaring of loudspeakers, blowing of whistles, apart from the bells that are incessantly rung, exceed the permissible decibel limit of silence zone,” she said, adding that the school has created a nuisance and residents were suffering from mental tension and other health problems.
“90% of the residents here have some health issues. Every household has a member with heart issue, or respiratory problem or hearing problem. My own daughter had a miscarriage recently. I suffer from impaired hearing and diabetes. It is because of the air and pollution caused by the school,” advocate Sharma told HT.
The child’s mother Parul Sharma also claimed that her daughter, Arshia, has had breathing problems and has had to be hospitalized on numerous occasions. “She has bronchitis. She has had to be nebulised four to five times, and the doctors have claimed that it is due to the environment. It is because of the dust that flies from the school’s playground,” said the mother.
After a brief hearing on Friday, the bench, headed by chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar, issued notices to Union ministry of environment and forests, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), Delhi Police, and also to the Central Pollution Control Board, Delhi Pollution Control Committee and the school.
The matter has been listed for further hearing on March 8.