An auto-rickshaw with around a hundred blow-horns stuck on it was kept as a metaphorical symbol of noise pollution across the city.

Mumbai : Anti-noise crusader of Awaaz Foundation, on Saturday, launched a campaign named ‘Horn Vrat’ urging people to refrain from honking. The campaign, led by Sumaira Abdulali, founder of Awaaz Foundation, was inaugurated by Principal Secretary, Transport and Ports, at Gateway of India.

An auto-rickshaw with around a hundred blow-horns stuck on it was kept as a metaphorical symbol of noise pollution across the city. “Mumbai honks around 18 million times each hour, which is way beyond the levels which can disturb any person. The movement is organised for people who vow to not honk in the streets,” said Sumaira Abdulali.

She also added this vehicle will start from south Mumbai and will run across the suburbs only to remind Mumbaikars against honking. All the required permission to run the campaign on the vehicle has been acquired. “South Mumbai has maximum vehicular traffic which in turn leads to more honking,” Abdulali informed.

Manoj Saunik, Principal Secretary, Transport and Ports, said, “We support the campaign. The city needs to reduce noise pollution. More and more people should pledge to quit honking.” Amruta Fadnavis, wife of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Commissioner of Police Dattatray Padsalgikar were expected to launch the anti-honking campaign. However, neither of them turned up.

According to sources, Abdulali received a phone call asking her to withdraw the Public Interest Litigation (PIL). After she denied the move, Amruta Fadnavis may have backed out from attending the event, ditto with the Commissioner.

In 2007, Awaaz in the PIL, highlighted how the measures taken by the state and central machinery to keep a check on noise pollution from traffic and construction activities in the city were inadequate.

“The PIL raises important aspects of noise control in Mumbai. No progress has been made towards solving any of those issues,             which were acute in 2007, have only worsened in the passing years,” said petitioner Abdulali.

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