In a significant development, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) today directed the Delhi government to take appropriate action if the noise levels generated by loudspeakers of East Delhi-based mosques during ‘azaan’ exceeded the permissible level.
The NGT passed the order while disposed of a plea by NGO Akhand Bharat Morcha which alleged that illegal use of loudspeakers at such places adversely affected the health of the residents living in their vicinity.
The plea had alleged that these places of worship were located in silent zones housing schools and hospitals and their loudspeakers surpassed the laid down decibel levels. It also added that the activities of some mosques were in violation of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 and the Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules, 2000.
A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar asked the AAP government and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) to take appropriate action against them in case of violation.
The counsel for various mosques submitted that they were using loudspeaker without exceeding the prescribed parameters.
“Counsel for respondent nos 6 to 10 and 12 (mosques) submits that they are using loudspeaker but they are not exceeding the prescribed parameters. They further state that they have no intention of disturbing the public at large or to violate the prescribed decibel standards.
“Counsel for the NCT of Delhi and the DPCC submits that they would conduct the inspection to check the noise level from different masjids stated in this application and would test the ambient air quality and noise level. If noise levels are found to be exceeding the prescribed decibel, they would take action in accordance with law,” the bench said.
In its plea, NGO Akhand Bharat Morcha had urged the NGT to direct the police to ensure no noise pollution is caused by the respondent mosques and that the use of loudspeaker if any is within the prescribed limits of the law.
(With PTI inputs)