The Delhi High Court today sought to know from the AAP government and the police measures they have taken on a plea seeking a ban on loudspeakers atop religious structures in the national capital. A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar also directed the Delhi Police to place before it the standing order, that they have claimed to have issued, with regard to usage of loudspeaker at religious places. It further directed the state government and the police to positively file an affidavit before it on the next date of hearing, April 18, explaining steps they have taken to publicise the order. The bench further said publicity is important as people have to know norms and consequences in case of violation. The court was hearing a PIL, filed by an activist Sanjjiiv Kkumaar, which said banning of loudspeakers will not violate Article 25 or 26 (Articles on Freedom of Religion) of the Constitution.
The plea said loudspeakers were never part of any religion as the instrument came into existence only in 1924. He also claimed in his plea that loudspeakers were never part of any religion whether Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism or Zoroastrianism. The petition also said the use of loudspeakers takes away the right of the citizens to speak with others, their right to read or think or the right to sleep. The plea has sought directions to the authorities to remove loudspeakers atop any religious structures, saying they violated citizens’ rights including those of minors and elderly people.