A Pune resident has filed an online petition on change.org concerning the alarming increase in noise pollution during festivities in the city.
Charan Bhawnani, the petition's initiator, expressed the urgent need to draw the administration's attention to the escalating noise pollution levels, which reached an average of 105 decibels during the 2023 Ganesh Visarjan procession.
"Pune, a city known for its cultural diversity, has a rich tradition of celebrating various festivals with great enthusiasm and fervour. However, this enthusiasm has, unfortunately, translated into an unmanageable increase in noise pollution over the past few years. This alarming rise in noise levels is not only detrimental to the health and well-being of Pune's residents but also poses a significant threat to the environment. The allowed levels of noise by the Indian law are 55db in the daytime and 45db in the night time. Unfortunately, Pune's average noise levels during festivities have far exceeded these recommended limits, causing severe health issues for our citizens, including stress, hearing impairment, sleep disturbances, and cardiovascular problems," reads the petition.
Average sound level of 105.2 decibels on Visarjan
Notably, the recent Ganesh festival celebrations have broken noise records, registering an average sound level of 105.2 decibels (dB) on the final day of Ganeshotsav, as reported by data collected by the College of Engineering Pune (COEP). This data highlights varying noise levels at different locations, including 100.9 dB at Belbaug Chowk, 106.3 dB at Ganpati Chowk, 106.0 dB at Limbraj Maharaj Chowk, 107.4 dB at Kunte Chowk, 103.1 dB at Umbrya Ganapati Chowk, 99.8 dB at Gokhale Chowk, 96.5 dB at Shedge Vithoba Chowk, 99.9 dB at Holkar Chowk, 100.0 dB at Tilak Chowk, and 90.2 dB at Khanduji Baba Chowk.
The petition, initiated on September 28, has garnered an encouraging response from the public, with over 4,000 signing it. It advocates for the stricter enforcement of noise pollution regulations during festivals, encourages eco-friendly celebrations, promotes public awareness programs, advocates for community engagement, and urges the establishment of a robust noise pollution monitoring and reporting system to effectively address this critical issue.