Horn, Ok, Sa Re Ga Ma: Indian musical instrument sounds for vehicle horns soon
Modern-day problems require modern-day solutions and expect Union Minister Nitin Gadkari to think out of the box when it comes to the issue of noise pollution. Gadkari recently stated that he is planning to bring in a law which would ensure that only sounds made by Indian musical instruments will be used as vehicular horns in the future. According to a report by news agency PTI, Gadkari mentioned this while inaugurating a highway in Nashik on Monday.
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Noise pollution is a major source of concern in Indian cities and villages, and much of it emanates from vehicles on roads. Many have cited the detrimental impact on humans as well as animals due to excessive and often needless honking. If Gadkari has his way, not only will the conventional horn sounds of vehicles be replaced but even sirens on ambulance and police vehicles could get a more melodious tune. “Now I want to put an end to these sirens as well. Now I am studying the sirens (used by) ambulances and police," he was quoted as saying. “An artist composed a tune of Akashwani (All Indian Radio) and it was played early in the morning. I am thinking of using that tune for ambulances so that people feel pleasant. It is so irritating, especially after ministers pass by, the sirens are used at full volume. This also harms the ears."
Underlining how sounds which are more pleasing to the ears need to be brought into vehicles, Gadkari listed several Indian musical instruments. “I am studying this and soon planning to make a law that the horns of all vehicles should be in Indian musical instruments so that it is pleasant to hear. Flute, tabla, violin, mouth organ, harmonium," he further added.
According to several studies conducted, both in India and elsewhere, vehicular sound has a large role in noise in urban areas. The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has been tracking decibel levels at key traffic junctions in several cities. Cities like Chennai, Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Hyderabad, among others, have been found to be the noisiest in the country. The government mandates that noise levels in residential areas should not exceed 55 dB during the day (and 45 at night).