In its latest report on Delhi's "outdoor advertising policy", the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) ruled out the Municipal Corporation of Delhi’s (MCD) request of hoardings atop mobile vans and rooftops in residential areas.
The environmental agency's decision was based on the Delhi Police report opposing mounted hoardings due to traffic hindrances.
The agency also turned down Delhi Metro Rail Corporation's (DMRC) request to host billboards on its property without permission from the MCD.
Advertisements on mobile vans
MCD argued as advertisements were allowed on other vehicles, like public buses or taxes, vehicles stationed with the sole purpose of advertisements too should be allowed. Rejecting the proposal, EPCA said it was fallacious to argue that mobile vehicles deployed for the sole purpose of advertisements could be equated with public utility vehicles. No ads without permission of municipal bodies.
Both Northern Railway and DMRC pressed for the right to display advertisements on their property withoutseeking MCD sanction. EPCA, however, held, “To ensure the policy is strictly adhered to, it is necessary prior permission be sought from municipal bodies."
Private agencies had criticised EPCA's policy, saying there was no empirical data to prove the hazards of outdoor advertisements.
However, EPCA said its analysis was based on survey of global literature. "It is clear from studies across the world that there is substantial concern regarding the correlation between the distraction caused by the outdoor advertisements and driving," held the EPCA.