Loudest goodbye

Oct 01, 2012, 06:32 IST | Urvashi Seth

Sound levels at Girgaum chowpatty reached 121.4 dB on Saturday, making it the loudest visarjan in the last five years

The city bid adieu to the Elephant Lord on Saturday with much vigour — loud music, dhols being played, DJs spinning the latest tracks at ear splitting volumes — leading to the sound levels reaching an all-time high. 

Sumaira Abdulali
That’s loud: Sumaira Abdulali checks the noise during the immersion 

According to noise activists, the decibel level recorded on Saturday was the highest not only of the season but also in the past five years at a screeching 121.4 dB. The sound levels broke the previous record of 115 dB that was measured on the fifth day of immersions on September 23.

Music and dhols
Bidding adieu amid the din: Devotees dance to music and dhols on Saturday as they head to Girgaum Chowpatty to immerse the Elephant Lord. Pics/Datta Kumbhar, sayed Sameer Abedi

According to the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB), Girgaum Chowpatty on Saturday also recorded its highest noise level in the last five years.

Devotees dance

Commenting on the din, Sumaira Abdulali, founder of the Awaaz foundation, said, “The noise levels on the final visarjan of Ganesha reached an all-time high of 121.4 dB. This noise level is significantly higher than the previous years. Also, what was surprising was that this year, small children were exposed to these ear-splitting sounds at close proximity.”

She added that after the racket had reached painful levels, she also called the police to ask them to order the music to stop. “The music finally was switched off at 12.30 am. However, the sound was unbearable and the levels were higher than any other year.”

And the sounds also bothered other people. Grumbling about the pandemonium, Sheeba Arora said, “I go to Girgaum Chowpatty every year but this year it was just too much. The noise was unbearable. I could not bear the sound.”

Max sound levels recorded at Girgaum Chowpatty:
2012: 121.4dB
2011: 85.6 dB
2010: 88.0 dB
2009: 77.5 dB
2008: 82.6 dB
2007: 102.7 dB
2006: 97 dB

Total immersions: 42,660
Sarvajanik: 7,810
Gharguti: 34,699
Gauri: 151

In artificial lakes:
Total immersions: 1512
Sarvajanik: 65
Gharguti: 1447
Gauri: 3

Did you know?
Limit of sound in industries cannot exceed 75 dB 

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