Congress seeks Shivaji Park ground for function
The Congress today assured the Bombay High Court that it would not violate noise pollution norms and also protect the cricket pitch at Shivaji Park ground here if it was allowed to use the place for holding its Foundation Day in December this year.
This was stated by Mukesh Vashi, counsel for Congress, before a bench of Justices S C Dharmadhikari and Gautam Patel.
Vashi assured that Congress would lay down a carpet on the ground to protect the cricket pitch. The court observed that Shiv Sena, which too was granted permission to hold Dussehra rally at Shivaji Park grounds, had flouted the noise pollution norms and also damaged the cricket pitch, despite giving a assurance that it would not do so.
"What is the use of giving an undertaking that laws would be obeyed when in fact they were being violated?", the Judges asked.
However, Congress assured that they would give an undertaking that noise pollution laws would be complied with and cricket pitch protected.
The Judges asked the Congress why it was so keen on holding its function at the Shivaji Park ground which had been declared as a "silence zone" earlier by the high court?.
"Why the party was not considering to celebrate the event at some other ground such as MMRDA in Bandra?," the bench asked.
The judges also quipped, "Are you (Congress) ready to pay security deposit in nine figures"?. To this, the Congress' counsel said in a lighter vein, "We are a poor party, Sir".
The court also wondered what was the urgency for the Congress to seek permission for the ground now as the function date was far away. However, the party said it had to invite dignitaries and hence needed time to make preparations.
WeCom Trust, on whose plea the high court had earlier passed orders declaring Shivaji Park ground as a silence zone, said loud speakers or public address system were not allowed at any functions held at this place.
It pointed out that a committee appointed by the high court to monitor noise pollution in this place had stated in its report that Shiv Sena flouted the noise pollution laws.
The matter would be heard on November 12.
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