Delhi government proposes to empower local bodies, station house officers to act against noise pollution

Image used for representative purpose only

Image used for representative purpose only

Aiming to effectively control and curb noise pollution in Delhi, the city government has proposed to empower officials of civic bodies to take action against violators, according to officials.

The Delhi Environment Department has also submitted a proposal to the Union Environment Ministry to designate state house officers (SHOs) as an authority to prosecute violators under noise pollution rules.

Under the noise pollution (regulation and control) rules, 2000 deputy commissioners, subdivisional magistrates, assistant commissioners of police (traffic), subdivisional police officers including of railways and airports and member secretary and chairman of the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) have been designated as an authority to take action against violators.

In Delhi, the local and civic bodies including Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), New Delhi Municipal Committee (NDMC) and Delhi Cantonment Board are not empowered to initiate legal action under the noise pollution (regulation and control) rules. The only option available to them is to report the violation to the designated authorities.

A committee set up by the National Green Tribunal to monitor compliance of the noise rules felt that noise pollution cannot be effectively controlled and curbed in Delhi without active participation of local bodies.

It asked the law department of the city government to initiate a proposal to empower the officials of local and civic bodies under the noise pollution (regulation and control) rules. The proposal is pending with the lieutenant governor.

The committee also noticed that the Delhi Police procured 244 sound level meters and distributed them among ACPs/sub-divisions and SHOs.

However, "very few actions" have been reported utilising the sound level meters. The reason for inaction is that SHOs are not designated as an authority to prosecute violators under noise pollution rules, according to the panel headed by Justice (retired) S. P. Garg.

The panel then asked the environment department to prepare a proposal for delegation of authorities to all station house officers (SHOs) in Delhi. The proposal is pending with the Union Environment Ministry, a senior official of the department said.

The Justice Garg committee has also asked local bodies and SHOs to hold regular meetings with office-bearers of religious institutions for self-regulation of noise instruments.

The panel has directed the Delhi government to issue a notification making the installation of sound limiters in sound systems mandatory.

Besides, the DPCC has been asked to prepare guidelines to prevent noise pollution at construction and demolition sites.

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Printable version | Jun 14, 2022 6:49:40 pm |