Friday, April 13, 2012

Scilences ‘distributed sound system’ - Bombay HC Court Had Told Police Not To Permit Loudspeakers

Mumbai: The Bombay high court on Friday clarified that even a distributed sound system cannot be used in a silence zone without court permission.
A division bench of chief justice Mohit Shah and justice Nitin Jamdar was hearing a petition filed by the Indian Education Society (IES), which runs King George High School in Dadar (E). The society had moved court after the police disallowed them permission to hold a function on their grounds. Subsequently, the HC allowed them to hold the function subject to maintaining decibel levels.
The court directed the police not to grant permission for traditional loudspeakers in a silence zone or residential zones, but only for a distributed sound system, on March 21. A distributed sound system consists of a series of small speakers or radio transmitters kept at a low volume so that sound does not travel beyond the audience.
IES counsel Raju Subramanian told the court that the March 21 order violates rule 6 of the noise pollution rules and is contrary to earlier judgments by the HC, and confirmed by the Supreme Court, prohibiting the use of loudspeakers in a silence zone.
Subramanian explained that educational institutions, hospitals and religious institutions do not fall within a silence zone as the zone begins 100 metres from their boundary. He said the court’s order may be grossly misused and should be modified to protect citizens.
Accepting the submission, the judges also clarified that loudspeakers and even distributed sound systems may not be used in a silence zone.
But the judges said educational institutions/ schools can use loudspeakers for normal activities, such as assembly and sports, and do not require permission for it.

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