Top 5 This Week

Related Posts

Kill The Noise Before It Kills You

The offenders are the worst hit because they are the closest of the source of the Noise, but they do not realize. By the time they do, it will be too late

It’s well past midnight and the traffic is still whizzing past. Every few seconds a bus, a truck, an ambulance, a car or a three-wheeler is passing by and the noise is unending. I am unable to sleep peacefully as, apart from the usual vehicular noise, an odd Bullet motorcycle with a modified silencer is blasting away, an odd ambulance has its siren blaring and an odd driver is habitually blowing his horn.

Kill The Noise Before It Kills You, Lifeinchd
Illustration By: Raman Bhardwaj

I am a common citizen of the “City Beautiful” – Chandigarh whose house unfortunately has its back to one of the busiest sector-diving roads in the tri-city. Here the noise of traffic subsides for less than a couple of hours – roughly between 2 a.m. and 4 a.m.

As if world is going to end

It’s approaching office hours and the traffic is beginning to pile up as the traffic lights come on. Everyone appears to be in a tearing hurry as if the world’s going to come to an end. The ‘smart’ ones look around for cops, and not finding them around, just ignore the red light and speed away. The complying types wait patiently behind the zebra crossing while the restless ones behind them keep honking away, appearing to think that by doing so the light will turn green sooner. The noise is deafening, more so for those who are blaring away to glory because they are the closest to the source of the noise.  

Point of no return

I am sure there are many like me who are slowly but surely falling into a deep hole from where there is no return. A recent study in Germany shows road and rail noise increases risk of heart disease but are we as citizens and the authorities really concerned? No we are not …because who cares. We as Indians love to make noise. Even a Karbonn Mobiles ad once made “Indians love loud music” the centre of their campaign for a particular model of their handset.

Be it our weddings and other family functions, religious ceremonies, birthday parties we apparently don’t appear to enjoy unless the music is ear drum-shattering. It’s “music” to road users when the buses (even school and college buses) and trucks on the highways impulsively and endlessly keep blaring their shrieking musical pressure horns.

Time we did something

It’s time we did something about it before our future generations develop serious hearing disabilities and other health complications like heart disease. We as concerned citizens, the local authorities and the courts must come together to curb this menace through stricter compliance of rules and regulations. More sign boards of no honking zones ought to be put up and violators need to be prosecuted on the roads. We also need to clearly earmark the agency which will strictly implement these laws – whether it is to be the state pollution control committee, or the traffic police, or both.

Inspiring some hope

It was good to see scores of school children forming a human chain to mark “No Horn Day” on Wednesday (April 26). It was a move by National Initiative for Safe Sound (NISS), which under its “no honking” campaign recently tested a small sample of traffic policemen in the city and found 30 percent of them suffering from disabling hearing loss. Indian Medical Association (IMA) and Rotary Club are extending a helping hand to NISS in this campaign.

The campaign appears to have cut some ice with the traffic police and the Chandigarh administration, which have thus far done precious little towards penalizing the offenders of noise pollution laws. Both the Chandigarh home secretary and the superintendent of police (traffic) have assured to work closely with NISS to clamp down on perpetrators of noise pollution.

Let’s hope they keep their word.

Popular Articles