A day after the Bombay High Court ordered the Shiv Sena to keep decibel levels low at its Dussehra rally on October 17, the party is consulting sound experts to see how the 50-decibel (dB) cap can be met.
The party is considering options such as erecting barriers, or sound insulators, around Shivaji Park, creating these barriers from porous material, which will act as noise dampeners, and setting up a distributed sound system using multiple low-volume speakers.
“We are talking to several sound experts about using acoustics and methods to minimise noise and ensure residents around the area are not disturbed,” said Anil Desai, the party’s general secretary, one of the main organisers of the rally.
The four-decade-old tradition of holding the Dussehra rally at Shivaji Park has always been a grand event with firecrackers and traditional musical instruments. All this will be missing this year. “We have told our shakha pramukhs to come without the fanfare. It will be a quiet assembly and dispersal,” Desai said.
Sumaira Abdulali, anti-sound pollution activist, is skeptical. “When we have measured the noise level at the Shivaji Park rally on two earlier occasions, it has reached almost 120dB,” she said.
Abdulali said the Supreme Court has prohibited the use of loudspeakers in silence zones at any time. The municipal corporation is yet to notify Shivaji Park as a silence zone.
The court on Monday told the police and municipal authorities to see that the organisers of the rally abide by the Noise Pollution Control Rules, 2010. Sanjeev Dayal, police commissioner, will meet senior police officers from the area to see how the norms can be implemented.
RR Patil, home minister, had on September 29 said that the state government would do all it can to ensure the Sena is allowed to hold the rally at Shivaji Park.