Kerala

Here is why it’s a quieter election

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Political parties and candidates may settle for nothing less than a high decibel campaign each poll, but not this time. The light and sound operators have effectively turned down the din.

After being on the receiving end of the Election Commission’s ire in the past elections for abetting noise pollution, the nearly two-lakh odd members of the Light and Sound Welfare Association of Kerala has chosen to tread a safer path.

“We have directed members across the State not to rent out more than four speakers for the election campaign. Besides, only a 500-Watt amplifier will be given to power them to ensure that they cannot make too heavy a noise even if they are to use 1,000 Watt speakers,” said P.A. Alison, Ernakulam district secretary of the association.

Members violating the direction would be made personally responsible for the consequences. The move comes in the wake of too many operators being booked by the police for sound pollution during the previous poll campaigns.

Political influence cannot help in such cases since the Election Commission is involved. Also, there have been instances where political parties had left the booked operators high and dry after their purpose is served.

Sometimes, the parties even refuse to pay the operators. “So, we now insist on an advance when the sound system is booked ahead of campaigning, and collect the full payment when the system is actually mounted on the campaign vehicle ” Mr. Alison said.

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2020 12:35:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/here-is-why-its-a-quieter-election/article7816570.ece

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