Akhil Bharatiya Grahak Panchayat has filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Bombay High Court against the State Government and Police for their alleged failure to implement Noise Pollution Rules effectively. The PIL seeks a complete ban on high-decibel sound systems and hazardous laser beams.
The PIL highlights that there have been credible reports of deaths attributed to hazardous sound pollution in the state, along with cases of individuals suffering damage to their eyesight due to hazardous laser beams during the 2023 Ganesh Festival in Maharashtra. It criticizes the inaction of the authorities, stating that violators are enjoying impunity.
The petition emphasizes that no religion permits the violation of laws during religious festivals. Noise pollution rules are often violated during political rallies and religious festivals, it added.
Advocates Satya Muley will represent the Akhil Bharatiya Grahak Panchayat in the PIL.
PIL not limited to any particular religion
This PIL is not limited to any particular religion or festival but aims to address all forms of noise pollution. Notaly, recent Ganesh festival celebrations set noise records, with an average sound level of 105.2 decibels (dB) recorded on the final day of Ganeshotsav. The data collected by the College of Engineering Pune (COEP) showed very high noise levels at different locations in Pune, indicating the extent of the problem.
The plea also criticises the actions of district collectors in various districts, such as Pune, who extended the time limit for using sound systems until midnight during certain days of the Ganesh Festival.
Noise pollution due to pubs
The petition takes issue with noise pollution violations by various commercial establishments in metro cities like Pune and Mumbai, particularly in residential zones such as Kalyani Nagar, Koregaon Park, Balewadi, Baner, and Viman Nagar in Pune District. These establishments continue to use high-decibel sound systems, adversely affecting the residents' right to sleep.
Furthermore, the petition challenges the illegal use of laser beams, highlighting instances during the Ganesh festival where dangerous laser beams allegedly caused partial blindness in an individual from Pune's Sinhagad road.
This PIL in the Bombay High Court comes after a similar online petition filed on change.org by a Pune resident on an online portal.