The Bombay High Court imposed Cost while stating that Amazon’s virtual assistant Alexa played loud music cannot be blamed.
Advocate J. J. Mulgaonkar, appearing for the petitioner, submitted that the allegations in the show-cause notices are vague because no particulars of violation have been specified.
He contended that the Authorities were duty bound to state the decibel levels and demonstrate in the show-cause notices itself that there was any breach of the Noise Pollution And Regulation Control Rules, 2000 and the provisions of Section 15 of Environment Protection Act, 1986.
He argued that the allegations in the show-cause notices are false and the petitioner has already filed a reply stating that no loudspeaker was used and the guests in the resort were playing the music through “Alexa”.
The division bench of Justice R. N. Laddha and Justice J.M.S. Sonak was satisfied that the petition and its mentioning for circulation was entirely misconceived.
The court said that the issue as to whether the allegations in the show-cause notices are true or false, will have to be decided by the Authority that has issued the show-cause notices.
“The show-cause notices, very clearly refer to playing loud music at the venue/place, i.e. Villa Calangute Resort on 06.05.2022 at 00:31 hrs and on 27.06.2022 at 22:33 hrs. Unless the petitioner places on record any permissions authorising it to play music at these hours, it cannot be said that the show-cause notices are vague or bereft of any particulars” the court added.
Prima facie, the bench felt that the petitioner cannot pass on the blame on its guests and even more, to Alexa.
The court noted that there are repeated complaints being filed against the petitioner.
The court while imposing the cost of 10,000/- and dismissing the petition thought it appropriate that the show-cause notices are disposed of before the petitioner’s application seeking permission are considered one way or the other.
Case title: Villa Calangute Resort Pvt. Ltd., rep. by its Director Dexter Savio De Souza v/s State of Goa rep. Thr. Chief Secretary And 6 Ors.
Citation: WRIT PETITION NO.407 OF 2022