MNS disallowed to blow poll trumpet in silence zone

MUMBAI: Bombay high court, on Friday refused to grant Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) the permission to hold public meeting at Shivaji Park as it falls under a silence zone.

A division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice R V More said that granting the permission would set a wrong precedence, “If we grant permission in this case then how can we deny any other political party that approaches the court in future.” MNS sought permission from court after Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) turned down its request to use loud speakers at the rally scheduled to be held on February 13 at Shivaji Park.

An earlier order passed by the court, on a petition from NGO Wecom trust, declared Shivaji Park a silence zone, however a Dusshera rally organised by Shiv Sena was held at the park. The BMC counsel while justifying the permission granted to Shiv Sena earlier said, “Permissions were granted earlier for cultural and religious events but cannot be granted for public meetings prior to elections.”

Advocate Sandeep Aole, appearing for NGO Wecom told the court that political parties often violate the assurance given to the court, “They use loud speakers thus increasing the noise level above 50 decibel…in the Dusshera rally held by Shiv Sena there were blatant violations of the noise pollution rules,” he said.

MNS’s counsel YS Jahagirdar maintained that MNS would be holding the rally in the day time and there would not be any violations of the provisions of the Noise Pollution (Control) Act. “These political parties and their supporters don’t come silently. They shout slogans and use loud speakers which are banned under the Noise Pollution rules in a silence zone,” additional government pleader PG Lad said.

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