My India diary: Sick of noise pollution

4th Jan, 2013

Bundelkhand, Uttar Pradesh, India

I am not happy with noise pollution here in my town in Bundelkhand, Uttar Pradesh.

I have noticed that people don’t care about noise pollution here. It is not specific to Bundelkhand. Instead, it is an India wide problem.

It goes on from 4am right upto midnight and often overnight.

I am visiting India currently. There is a Kirtan (religious singing) going on late in the night in the neighborhood, using loud speakers, which  did not let me fall asleep. Once I fell asleep at about 2am, I was waken up with a loud Azaan from the neighborhood mosque at 4am. I am cranky now. This happens here almost daily.

There is simply no awareness about its harm.

Noise pollution comes from:

  1. Loud speakers from temples and mosques
  2. Horns from motor vehicles
  3. Motor vehicles
  4. Heavy braking
  5. Kirtans and prayers, using loud speakers
  6. Loud songs from transistors
  7. Shouting and screaming
  8. Ram Lila and similar shows
  9. Political speeches
  10. Political and religious processions
  11. Loud announcements

Noise pollution affects hearing leading to hearing impairment which often ends in the need for hearing aids. Such aids are very expensive which many can’t afford.

Noise pollution affects general health too. Disturbance in sleep has adverse health outcomes.

I just hope that bureaucrats will do something to create an awareness about it and do something to control it. Mass media like newspapers can also help in creating awareness about it.

AS far as I am concerned, I am in favour of stopping use of loud speakers from any place of worship. If they have to be used, they should be powerful enough only for the venue, not the whole suburb or the city.

India needs political will to curb noise pollution, irrespective of who is generating it.

Dr Yadu Singh

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