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A law to listen to music?

Listening to music on headphones is no more just a recreational activity, as it’s also become a style statement for some.

music Updated: Feb 12, 2012 01:19 IST
Vaishali Bhambri
Vaishali Bhambri
Hindustan Times

Listening to music on headphones is no more just a recreational activity, as it’s also become a style statement for some. But what happens when this fad becomes fatal? Road safety experts say that there should be a law for pedestrians that restricts them to listen to music on headphones while on road.

In the past few months, the number of accidents caused due to listening to music on headphones has increased, the latest case being that of a 16-year-old Delhi student. He was crushed to death in Ghaziabad on January 28 by a speeding train when he failed to hear the sound of an approaching train, as he was listening to music on his headphones.

However, youngsters are not really happy with the idea of introducing a fine or any other form of law restricting the use of headphones. “Don’t we even have the freedom to listen to music while we are travelling? Now somebody will keep a tab on our recreational activities as well. This is not done,” says Preeyank Chaddha, 19, a Delhi University student. “Maybe, there should be a tab on the volume,” says Sakshi Khatri, 24, a fashion design student.

“At the moment, there is no law in the country for pedestrians listening to music on the road. We have a designated road safety cell through which awareness programmes are conducted,” says Satyendra Garg, joint commissioner, police traffic. Road safety experts say that any sort of distraction while walking on the road, or even driving, can lead to accidents.

Girish Kupreti, founder of Road Safety and Fleet Management institute in Mahipalpur area, feels that a law for pedestrians is a must to avoid such accidents. “We are for any such law. People should understand that being safe is the first and the foremost thing that one must keep in mind while on road,” he says. “One must be fined for this, as this can be dangerous for other travelling on the road as well,” he adds.

An international menace?
Listening to music on earphones while on road has been being recognised as a major threat on the roads in the US, Australia and other countries, perhaps second only to using the cellphone while driving. In the US, for some time now, legislators have unsuccessfully attempted to introduce laws banning use of headphones while walking.

However, no law has been passed so far. more on the web Do you think there should be a law to keep a check on pedestrians listening to music? Vote in the poll by logging in at

First Published: Feb 11, 2012 19:28 IST