THE NATIONAL Green Tribunal has rapped the police and the transport departments again on non-compliance in laying down standards for sirens, multi-toned horns used in motor vehicles across the state. In a previous hearing, the NGT had ordered a consultative meeting with various authorities, including joint secretaries of the transport department, the environment department and the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board, which was held on March 21.
“The consultative meeting was a hope to have positive impact on the police department, transport department and all concerned. But it is a matter of regret that despite very congenial atmosphere in which serious issues were discussed and officers impressed to comply with the directions issued by the tribunal, the exercise has been futile,” the NGT, western zone bench, headed by Justice Dr Jawad Rahim, judicial member and Dr Ajay Deshpande, expert member, said. The tribunal said despite the meeting, no statement as called for had been filed before the green bench.
The applicant in the case, Dileep Nevatia, has sought compliance of a government notification dated July 31, 2014, prescribing standards for multi-toned horns, sirens and ban those which breach noise standards. He stated before the tribunal last week that there was an ‘inordinate and deliberate delay’ by these departments in the progress made to implement the notification. “Senior officers on behalf of the director general are present but we find that their presence is of no use in absence of compliance,” the tribunal said.
The NGT has already directed the Union government to ensure a two-fold action in this matter. This includes regulation at the manufacturing levels and delivery points by carmakers and monitoring by the regional transport offices when the vehicles are plying on the road to check violations. Traffic police will also play a key role in penalising violators of the notification. It prescribes that the sound level should not exceed 10 decibels above the engine sound level.