After cracking down on drunken driving, the government is training its guns on blaring horns. So, Mumbaikars should not be surprised if they find the usually chaotic city roads, bustling with vehicular traffic and honking, quiet on Monday.
The city police’s traffic department has decided to observe a ‘No Honking Day’ on the occasion of World Health Day on April 7 as noise pollution affects health. The department, which started the highly successful and widely emulated campaign against drunken driving last year, has roped in a host of NGOs, automobile associations, as well as schools and colleges to sensitise over 1.5 million motorists about the campaign.
“The focus is on creating awareness among the people through the campaign. Lowering the decibel levels is not the priority, we have to educate people and still if they persist with honking, punitive action will be taken,” DCP (Traffic) Harish Baijal said.
Hoardings, banners, posters and stickers carrying information about the campaign have been put up across the city so that majority of the motorists abstain from honking on that day, he said.
The police have taken action against 1,920 motorists since January for using pressure/musical/reverse horns, honking in silence zones and for unnecessary honking.
Deputy Chief Minister RR Patil wants to make the city free of noise pollution caused by loud horns. Patil said he was keen on seeing loud horns off Mumbai’s streets even if that means imposing penalties on offenders. However, matters will not end after April 7. The traffic department, said Patil, will plan a ‘no honking week’, followed by a ‘no honking month’, during which only minimal and ‘necessary’ use of horns will be permitted.
(With PTI inputs)