The National Green Tribunal (NGT) decreed a ban on public protests and demonstrations of all kinds at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi with immediate effect to save the heritage structure as well as the residents of the place from noise pollution.
The NGT ordered that all types protests and demonstrations to be shifted to Ramleela Maidan from now on, which is located at Ajmeri Gate of Old Delhi.
The Green Tribunal is a press release communique stated:
When the agitation consisting of thousands and thousands of people assemble on Jantar Mantar road, no one is there to check their total number and in case of exceeding five thousand, to send them to Ram Leela ground at Ajmeri Gate.
Headed by Justice R S Rathore, the NGT ordered the Delhi government, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) and the Delhi Police Commissioner to “immediately stop all dharnas, assembling of people, public speeches and use of loudspeakers at Jantar Mantar Road within four weeks.”
This order was made after a complaint was filed by the residents of the area of the alleged noise pollution caused by the protests and demonstrations that disrupted the harmony of the neighborhood.
The environmental committee further said in its order that such protests in Jantar Mantar was in violation of environmental laws, including Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981:
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The protest/dharna and agitation on the stretch on Jantar Mantar road is without any authorization or order from a competent authority, wholly illegal and in gross violation of laws, relating to pollution. The activities have to make shifts and temporary structures, use of a loudspeaker, public address system, etc., etc. are without permission from any competent authority and therefore the same is wholly illegal. The continuance use of the area by the protestors/agitators is a violation of environmental laws including Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981.
It also said that the residents of the neighboring areas have the right to live peacefully and comfortably in an area free from pollution of all kinds.
It is to be noted that the 17th-century monument, which has envisaged some of the biggest protests in NCR, is in fact listed as a residential area, which makes mass demonstrations and use of loudspeakers illegal.