HEARING A public interest litigation regarding noise pollution caused by festival pandals, the Bombay High Court on Thursday said the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC)’s initiative to develop a special software to scrutinise pandals before granting them permission could be replicated by other urban local bodies. A division bench of Justice A S Oka and Justice P N Deshmukh said, “…making a new software is certainly a new way found by the Navi Mumbai corporation.” The court asked the state government to consider NMMC’s affidavit on the new software and look into whether other civic bodies could implement it too.
The affidavit filed by Dr Ramaswami N, municipal commissioner, NMMC, said the corporation was in the process of developing a special software for processing applications seeking permission for pandals. The software would allow the ward officer concerned to first scrutinise the online application and, upon being satisfied after perusing requisite documents, mark the same for consideration by the police station concerned, the traffic police and fire departments. These officials will receive text messages on their phones intimating them of the receipt of a new application for NOC, following which they have to upload their respective NOCs on the software within 10 days.
Subsequently, the deputy engineer (civil) in the ward will visit the site, take photographs and record his views about the pandal not affecting free flow of traffic/pedestrian in the software within 10 days. The applicant will receive an SMS with instructions to pay permission fees online. Thereafter, the ward officer will issue permission.