Disturbed by the loud noise created during the Mumbai Marathon last year, south Mumbai residents have raised their voice against causing noise pollution again this year.
In a letter to the state government and pollution boards, the Nariman Point Churchgate Citizens Association (NPCCA) have asked organisers not to install loudspeakers or any other sound amplification equipment along N S Road (Marine Drive) during the Mumbai Marathon scheduled for January 15, 2017.
The residents said that the stalls set up along the heritage precinct Marine Drive promenade last year were playing loud music from 5am till noon. “The entire Marine Drive residential area spread across 1.8 kilometre, starting from the Air India building all the way up to Marine Lines flyover, is affected by the loud noise created during the marathon,” said Atul Kumar, vice-president, NPCCA. “While we are not against the marathon, unnecessary use of loudspeakers for playing music is a violation of Bombay high court rules,” he said.
“Along the 1.8 kilometre stretch, there are four colleges and a school. It is also a silence zone and a heritage precinct cannot have these stalls playing loud music while people are running. The marathon is for good health but not for creating noise pollution,” said Swarn Kohli, president, NPCCA.
Noise standards as laid down under the Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules, 2000 identifies residential and silence zones to have 55dB and 50dB during the day and 45dB and 40dB during the night respectively. Additionally, a Bombay high court order from August last year, not only bans the use of loudspeakers at Silence Zones but even the use of drums, blowing horns, trumpets and playing of any music using sound amplifiers.
Meanwhile, officials from the Mumbai police said that they had not received any such communication. “We are not aware of any such letter and neither have we received any communication from the government regarding noise pollution issues,” said Manoj Sharma, deputy commissioner of police, zone 1.
An official from the state pollution control board said that they would look into the matter and direct the police to take action if noise rules are violated.
A spokesperson from the Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon said that they would play music post 6am till noon. “Along the course, we have motivational zones that are created to support and cheer the participants on as they push themselves to complete their race. Music is a powerful motivational medium and helps the participants as much as it helps the thousands that line the streets to cheer the runners,” said the spokesperson. “At all times as in the past, care is taken to ensure that this is done with all the necessary permissions, within the time limit stated by the authorities.”
Noise standards as laid down in Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules, 2000.
Category of area Day time limit (in dB) (6.30am to 8.30pm) Night time limit (in dB) (8.30pm – 6.30am)
Residential area 55 45
Silence zone 50 40