You can’t relax any noise rules during Ganpati, Bombay HC tells Maharashtra state
Mumbai city news: The court said the state cannot take “any adverse decision” against a previous HC judgment that says no loudspeaker can be used in a silence zone at any hour of the daymumbai Updated: Jul 14, 2017 01:36 IST
The Bombay high court on Thursday cautioned the state government against any relaxation in noise pollution rules during festivities like Ganpati and Navratri.
A division bench of justice Abhay Oka and justice Vibha Kankanwadi said the state government cannot take “any adverse decision” – decision going against the judgment of the high court that says no loudspeaker or other sound amplifier can be used in a silence zone at any hour of the day.
The court was hearing a bunch of public interest litigations filed by activists Dr. Yashwant Oke, Sumera Abdulali of Aawaz Foundation and Thane-based activist Dr. Mahesh Bedekar complaining about frequent violations of the Noise Pollution Rules, 2000, especially during public celebrations of religious festivals and the inaction of authorities even if complaints were lodged.
The comment came after Abdulali’s counsel, advocate Rohaan Cama, said the state government’s move to seek rule relaxation was completely contrary to the law laid down by the high court and confirmed by the Supreme Court.
He also highlighted the need to take strict action against unnecessary honking and urged the court to order the state to undertake special drives to curb the menace.
Responding to the plea, advocate general Ashutosh Kumbhakoni said the road transport department and the traffic police will conduct workshops for taxi drivers, including drivers of Ola and Uber cabs, and autorickshaw drivers.
Cama also said the need to issue appropriate directions to curb noise from construction sites. In this regard, the court directed the state to issue directions to all planning authorities across the state to incorporate the conditions – of adhering to provisions of the Noise Pollution Rules, 2000 – while granting permissions.
The court also directed the state to seek a report from NEERI describing the process and procedure to carry out noise mapping in 27 cities across Maharashtra, which include urban areas within the Mumbai Metropolitan Region and Nagpur.