raj thackeray: Police To Formulate Guidelines On Loudspeaker Use: Home Min | Mumbai News – Times of India

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MUMBAI: Amid the ongoing row on the use of loudspeakers at religious sites triggered by MNS chief Raj Thackeray, state home minister Dilip Walse Patil said on Monday that the director general of police and Mumbai police commissioner would formulate guidelines for the use of loudspeakers in public places.

“The guidelines will be issued in the next 1-2 days. We have kept an eye on the law and order situation in the state. Strict action will be taken against those who try to disturb the peace in the state,” he told the media.
However, there are already clear rules on noise pollution defined by the Centre’s Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules 2000. These have been reinforced by various state government resolutions from the home and environment departments and court orders.
The rules in force in the state say that the authorities have to ensure that no loudspeaker or public address system shall be used in public places without obtaining written permission from the authorities and a license if required.
The use of loudspeakers is not permitted between 10 pm and 6 am, except in closed premises like auditoriums for communication within. State governments can allow exceptions and permit the use of loudspeakers from 10 pm to 12 midnight for a maximum of 15 days in the year.
Noise levels are not allowed to cross ambient air quality standards designated for different zones. In industrial zones, the decibel (dB) level cannot cross 75 dB in the daytime and 70 at night. In commercial areas, it is 65 during the day and 55 in the night. In residential zones, the limit is 55 in the daytime and 45 in the night. In silent zones, the limit is 50 decibels in the day and 40 decibels at night.
In the Central rules, state governments are allowed to declare silent zones. The rules say, “an area comprising not less than 100 metres around hospitals, educational institutions and courts may be declared as a silent zone for the purpose of these rules.”
“Over the years, the Maharashtra government has drastically reduced the number of silent zones. The number in Mumbai has come down from 2,500 to just about 150,” said Sumaira Abdulali, from the NGO Awaaz, who has been at the forefront of the battle against noise pollution.

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