• Saturday, September 30, 2023


India may have law to change ‘irritating’ car horns into instrumental music

A traffic congestion in India’s capital New Delhi (Photo by PRAKASH SINGH/AFP via Getty Images)

By: Shubham Ghosh

INDIA’S transport minister Nitin Gadkari wants to bring in a law that would replace the car-horn cacophony on the country’s roads with soothing music. He said he was planning a legislation whereby all vehicles on roads should have horns in Indian musical instruments like flute, table, violin, mouth organ, harmonium, etc., that are pleasant to hear.

Speaking at a highway inauguration ceremony in Nashik in the western Indian state of Maharashtra on Monday (4), Gadkari said, “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.”

Gadkari, 64, said he also wanted to replace the “irritating” sirens used by ambulances and police vehicles with soothing tunes.

“Now I want to put an end to these sirens as well. Now I am studying the sirens (used by) ambulances and police,” the minister said, adding, “An artist composed a tune of Akashvani (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.”

The World Health Organization says noise pollution can lead to hearing loss, cardiovascular problems, cognitive impairment, stress and depression.

The roads of India, the world’s second most populous nation, are among the planet’s noisiest places as vehicles of all sorts fight for space on congested roads. The high traffic means more use of horns and drivers use them frequently to alert people and other vehicles.

Commercial vehicles plying on the country’s roads use messages painted on their backs like ‘Horn OK Please’ or ‘Blow Horn’ in order to caution vehicles trailing them and intending to overtake.

Eastern Eye

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