The Bombay High Court on Saturday granted permission to the Maharashtra Kho Kho Association to use loudspeakers at Shivaji Park in Dadar during the National Senior Kho Kho Championship tournament to be held there from May 16.
The association moved the high court after the Shivaji Park police and the police commissioner rejected their request to use loudspeakers during the tournament following an earlier high court order.
The Bombay High Court on May 5 ordered the municipal corporation to take steps to declare Shivaji Park a ‘silence zone’ under the Pollution Control Regulations and also banned the use of loudspeakers at the ground.
The association in its petition stated that 16 teams of senior players were participating in the national sporting event, which will conclude on May 20.
It added that at least 1,200 players and officials from across the country were to participate and the use of loudspeakers was essential for conducting the tournament smoothly.
The bench consisting of Justice R.M. Sawant and Justice Mridula Bhatkar allowed the application as a ‘one-time exception’, as the planning began in the month of January, four months before the May 5 order.
However, the court said the noise level must not cross the 50 decibels limit. “The court said the loudspeakers will only be used for giving instructions and making announcements and not for giving a running commentary or playing music or for making speeches”, said advocate Aditya Khanna who appeared for the association.
Wecom Trust approached the high court saying there were several schools and religious places within the 100-m radius of Shivaji Park and hence it should be declared a silence zone, following which the high court on May 5 banned the use of loudspeakers at Shivaji Park.
The Bombay High Court made an exception only for three days — December 6 (death anniversary of Dr Ambedkar), Republic Day and May 1 (Maharashtra-state foundation day).