Delhi high court notice on pleas to ban loudspeakers at religious structures
The Delhi High Court on Friday sought a response from the Centre, the Delhi government and police on a plea seeking direction to ban loudspeakers at religious structures, claiming it violates fundamental right to privacy of people living nearby.
The petition filed by a rights activist said loudspeakers violate fundamental rights of citizens and person right of left alone, their physical and mental peace, one’s spatial control, personal space and hence it encroach one’s fundamental right to privacy.
Petitioner Sanjjiiv Kkumaar said “loudspeakers were never part of any of the religions whether it’s Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism or Zoroastrianism”.
He argued “loudspeaker came into existence in 1924, that is less than 100 years and hence banning it will not hit (violate) Article 25 or 26 of the Constitution of India”.
Use of loudspeakers certainly takes away the right of the citizens to speak with others, their right to read or think, right to sleep. There may be heart patients or patients suffering from nervous disorder may be compelled to bear this serious impact of sound pollution which has had an adverse effect on them. Toddlers, kids are equally affected, said Kkumaar.
“It’s akin to trespassing one’s spatial control, one’s house. If after right to privacy ruling (of the Supreme Court), even the state cannot enter one’s house if he hasn’t committed any crime, how the non-state religious actors can ruin one’s peace tranquillity. After privacy being made a fundamental right, loudspeakers are no-go zone and needs to be banned,” said the plea.
A nine-judge Constitutional bench of the Supreme Court in August unanimously held that right to privacy is a fundamental right guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution.
Citing from the top court’s landmark ruling, the petition said use of loudspeakers on religious structures was “encroachment and violation of one’s fundamental rights of privacy which is protected as an intrinsic part of the right to life and personal liberty”.