Consider advice of NGO, activist, Bombay HC tells state
The court has also warned the commissioners of five municipal corporations — Bhiwandi, Ulhasnagar, Thane, Malegaon and Mira-Bhayandar — of contempt if they fail to file by May 2 the additional affidavits that it had sought in December 2018.Updated: Apr 26, 2019 02:09 IST
After the state failed to frame guidelines to reduce noise pollution and pandal violations in the city and state, the Bombay high court (HC) has directed the government to consider and implement suggestions given by a non-governmental organisation (NGO) and an activist in this regard.
The court has also warned the commissioners of five municipal corporations — Bhiwandi, Ulhasnagar, Thane, Malegaon and Mira-Bhayandar — of contempt if they fail to file by May 2 the additional affidavits that it had sought in December 2018.
These affidavits had to enumerate actions taken by them with regards to noise and pandal violation complaints received during the Ganpati, Dussehra and Eid-e-Milad festivals.
The court gave these directions when the public interest litigations (PIL) filed by Awaaz Foundation and Pune resident Mahesh Bedekar came up for hearing before the bench of justices AS Oka and MS Sanklecha.
Advocate Rohan Cama on behalf of Awaaz Foundation informed the bench that state had failed to frame guidelines to curb noise emanating from vehicular traffic and at construction sites. He added that just like the state had issued guidelines for traffic and drink driving, which were being followed diligently by the public, no guidelines were framed for pandals.
Cama said they had prepared a list of suggestions, which, if implemented, would address the problem of noise and pandals too. Cama also said that the municipal corporations of Bhiwandi, Ulhasnagar, Thane, Malegaon and Mira-Bhayandar had failed to submit additional affidavits that had been sought by the court in December 2018.
After perusing the suggestions, the court directed the state to consider implementing the same as they had failed to frame guidelines since 2016.
The state put forth its arguments through additional government pleader Yatin Kochare. Kochare informed the court that the Mumbai police commissioner needed more time to file the affidavit enumerating the type of action and action taken on errant officers. The court allowed it and the same has to be filed by May 2.
The court further directed the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) to file an affidavit regarding the procedure it had adopted to lodge criminal complaints and the number of complaints it had registered so far.