Kejriwal yet to comply with SC orders of removing loudspeakers from places of worship: Delhi BJP

Amid a controversy over the use of loudspeakers, Delhi BJP chief Adesh Gupta on Tuesday said the Delhi government has not yet complied with the Supreme Court orders regarding the removal of loudspeakers from mosques and other religious places.

According to the norms, loudspeakers are prohibited within a circumference of 100 metres of silent zones such as hospitals, courts and schools among others.

In my survey of many temples and gurudwaras, I found that there was no noise pollution. Bhajan and keertans were taking place only inside the temple or gurudwara premises. The Delhi government did not do its duty (of removing loudspeakers from other religious places), Gupta said in a press conference.

On Monday, he had written to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in this connection, hours after BJP MP Parvesh Sahib Singh Verma made a similar request to Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal and commissioners of the three municipalities in the capital.

Verma apprised Bajail that the Uttar Pradesh government had cracked the whip on loudspeakers and sought to nudge the Delhi government to follow suit.

The Supreme Court in 2005 banned the use of loudspeakers and music systems in public places between 10 pm and 6 am, except in cases of public emergency, citing the serious effects of noise pollution on the health of local residents.

In his letter to Kejriwal, Gupta wrote that noise pollution in Delhi had turned out to be a major issue.

He referred to a survey that attributed noise pollution as the reason for the rise in cases of high blood pressure, hearing problems, irritation and sleeplessness.

As per the Supreme Court’s order, loudspeakers installed at religious and other places should be removed. They are the main source of noise pollution. The Supreme Court has also said that the limit of their sound should be prescribed so that students, patients and people working in offices are not disturbed.

Therefore, I request you to remove loudspeakers from all these places following the court’s order, on lines of other states. Violators should be punished as per the law. This is a demand of all our Delhi MPs and MLAs, Gupta said in the letter on Monday evening.

He also tweeted the copy of his letter to the chief minister. In Uttar Pradesh, a drive to remove unauthorised loudspeakers from religious places and to set the volume of others within permissible limits began on April 25.

Nearly 54,000 unauthorised loudspeakers were removed from religious places and the volume of another at least 60,000 were set to permissible limits across the state following a government order.