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Tuesday, Sep 17, 2019

Ganeshotsav: Mumbai records highest noise level in 4 years

Awaaz Foundation that recorded noise levels on Thursday night said the highest noise level, 121.3 decibels (dB) - as loud as a jet plane during takeoff (120 dB), was recorded near Royal Opera House junction on Charni Road just before midnight.

india Updated: Sep 14, 2019 06:36 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Mumbai
Devotees in a procession to immerse idols of Ganesha in the Arabian Sea in Mumbai on Thursday.
Devotees in a procession to immerse idols of Ganesha in the Arabian Sea in Mumbai on Thursday.(Anshuman Poyrekar/HT Photo)
         

Noise levels from processions on ‘Anant Chaturdashi’, the eleventh and final day of Ganeshotsav, were the highest in the past four years in Mumbai, an anti-noise campaigner said on Friday.

Awaaz Foundation that recorded noise levels on Thursday night said the highest noise level, 121.3 decibels (dB) - as loud as a jet plane during takeoff (120 dB), was recorded near Royal Opera House junction on Charni Road just before midnight.

The second highest noise level was at 8.45 pm in SV Road, Santacruz West at 120.2 dB. This is the route to Juhu beach.

According to the Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules, 2000, residential areas should have a maximum noise level of 55 decibel (dB) in the day and 45dB at night. The Bombay high court last year banned use of hi-tech sound-amplifying systems such as DJs during Ganeshotsav and other festivals.

“In spite of the higher readings, there has been a huge increase in awareness about noise during this festival,” said Sumaira Abdulali, convener, Awaaz Foundation.

Brihanmumbai Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Samanvay Samiti (BSGSS), the umbrella body of Ganesh mandals, said specific guidelines to control noise among all other directions were issued almost a month before the festival.

“The mandals across Mumbai ensured not to use DJ systems, which is a first for the city and noise levels were extremely low. All mandals adhered to the timings given to them to reach immersion points. Even the Mumbai police commissioner conveyed his regards to us for a well organised eleventh day of Ganeshotsav,” said Naresh Dahibhavkar, BSGSS president.

“The technique to record noise by Awaaz Foundation is incorrect as they place the decibel metre right in front of the speakers. We will go by final readings taken by Mumbai police.”

Abdulali said there were no specific rules on how noise readings were to be taken. “Measurements need not be a certain distance from a loudspeaker as bystanders are directly exposed to noise. While noise levels were high closer to immersion sites, remaining parts of the city were quiet,” she said.

Last year, the city recorded its quietest Ganeshotsav in six years with maximum noise levels at 113.9 dB. The noisiest last day of the annual festival was recorded in 2015 at 123.7 dB.

Mumbai police spokesperson Pranaya Ashok said: “All complaints regarding noise pollution were addressed on Thursday. Action will be taken wherever there have been violations. The noise readings from different zones are being compiled.”

First Published: Sep 13, 2019 23:48 IST