Noise pollution at Delhi airport: Plea against new runaway

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New Delhi, May 10: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has sought the Centre's response on a plea alleging that noise created by aircraft at IGI Airport here is affecting the health of nearby residents.

A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar also issued notice to the Central Pollution Control Board and Delhi Pollution Control Committee and asked them to inform the other parties in the case about the next date of hearing on May 28.

The tribunal was hearing a batch of petitions transferred to it from the Delhi High Court. The high court had on April 16 referred the matter to NGT, saying the petitions "involve a substantial question relating to environment".

The high court's order had come on PILs filed by the residents of Vasant Kunj, Bijwasan and also the Indian Spinal Injuries Centre (ISIC), a super speciality hospital located near the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport.

The petitioners have said that the government should take necessary measures to mitigate noise pollution caused by aircraft. They have also sought quashing of government clearance to Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) for construction of a runway at the international airport.

The residents and the ISIC have alleged that the noise created by planes landing disturbs the residents as well as the patients in the hospital which is a violation of their fundamental right of life and liberty.

Referring to runway number 29 of the international airport, the petitioners alleged that the noise created by aircraft, flying at a height of 200ft to 300ft at the time of landing, is disturbing the patients and also affecting health of the residents.

The hospital said noise created by planes are usually between the range of 75 decibel to 94 decibel, and is "clearly beyond the stipulated standards laid down under the Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules, 2000." DIAL had on May 27, 2009 placed on record that runway number 29 would be used for flights between 6 am to 10 pm only.


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