Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Music banned from Vehicles ?

I was shocked to hear on radio today that Mumbai Traffic Police has banned Music from moving Vehicles ? And the logic provided by an official was that the listening to music diverts the concentration of the driver from driving to listening to music, thereby causing accidents on roads. They had no statistics to prove the fact. The RJ, Malishka, kept asking the official what was the logic behind coming up with such a law all of a sudden, to which we were informed that the law already existed but was being seriously implemented only lately. She reasoned that it was understood if someone was playing music loudly and causing nuisance to others, but this ban was ridiculous. 'Is it allowed at signals?' 'Yes', replied the official. 'Only not allowed in moving vehicles'. How stupid. 'How will you confirm if music is being played?', the RJ asked. 'Woh toh pata chalta hai na'. Another dumb reply. 'Was this a way of earning money by way of bribe, now that Diwali is round the corner', she finally asked in Hindi. The official kept quiet and justified his stand.

I was wondering - with growing traffic in Mumbai, which moves at snail's pace at peak hours and no good public transportation infrastructure in sight, playing music comes to the rescue. Else road rage with be a common sight. At least these music stations or songs keep your mood pleasant.

I tuned in to another radio channel, where another RJ Jeeturaaj brought up the topic but in a much diplomatic way. 'From where do you think the rumour of music being banned in moving vehicles started?' I dunno if he was asking the question to the same official. But if he was the same, he was smarter this time. He clarified that only loud music which caused nuisance to other pedestrains and commuters was banned. One could play music at a low/ medium volume. Now that was indeed a relief!

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