The never-ending battle against noise pollution in Goa

It is essential to ensure rigorous enforcement of existing regulations, particularly during sensitive hours such as evenings and late nights
NOT MUSIC TO THE EARS: Coastal communities of North Goa are regularly subjected to noise pollution.
NOT MUSIC TO THE EARS: Coastal communities of North Goa are regularly subjected to noise pollution. Photo: Gomantak Times

Nestled among the picturesque landscapes of Goa lies a persistent menace that continues to hound residents and visitors alike -- the relentless roar of loud music.

In the vibrant coastal communities of North Goa, particularly in areas like Calangute, Candolim and Anjuna-Vagator, the issue of noise pollution remains a pressing concern despite repeated assurances from authorities.

NOT MUSIC TO THE EARS: Coastal communities of North Goa are regularly subjected to noise pollution.
Glimpses of Reis Magos village in Goa

Chief Minister Pramod Sawant's pledges to address the problem, especially during the ongoing board exams, have provided little respite to those grappling with the disruptive effects of loud music.

While there has been a semblance of improvement with a reduction in the nuisance of loud music after 10 pm, many establishments blatantly flout regulations by blasting music between 6 pm to 10 pm.

Such actions not only violate the permissible decibel levels mandated by the Supreme Court, but also disrupt the peace and well-being of nearby residents.

Chief Minister Pramod Sawant's pledges to address the problem, especially during the ongoing board exams, have provided little respite to those grappling with the disruptive effects of loud music.

Reports indicate that certain restaurant and club owners employ deceptive tactics to circumvent restrictions, such as abruptly lowering and then raising the volume mid-event.

These manoeuvres not only undermine regulatory measures, but also exacerbate noise pollution concerns, leaving residents frustrated and distressed.

Undoubtedly, there is a slight improvement, but it is due to the closure of some establishments rather than effective enforcement of regulations.

SOUND TREK: A traffic jam in Vagator, well past midnight, as tourists search for clubs playing music till early morning.
SOUND TREK: A traffic jam in Vagator, well past midnight, as tourists search for clubs playing music till early morning. Photo: Augusto Rodrigues

Notorious venues like Diaz, Raeeth, House of Chapora and Romeo Lane continue to operate with impunity, perpetuating the noise pollution problem.

The impact of the election code is curbing loud music after 10 pm, but the issue persists during peak evening hours. Despite proactive measures by the police, the persistent disturbance caused by loud music remains a cause for concern among residents.

Despite proactive measures by the police, the persistent disturbance caused by loud music remains a cause for concern among residents.

While there's a subdued volume after 10 pm, the disruption during peak evening hours disrupts residents’ peace.

The Xavier Retreat House, in Baga, stands as a poignant example, with relentless noise from nearby shacks and commercial units impeding the tranquillity sought by its visitors.

It is really sad that we are unable to provide solace to attendees due to the incessant noise.

NOT MUSIC TO THE EARS: Coastal communities of North Goa are regularly subjected to noise pollution.
A scenic ride from Penha de França to Pomburpa in Goa is all you need

Not just that, even religious services at the retreat house are not spared from the intrusion of loud music, hindering the congregation’s ability to focus and find solace.

The juxtaposition of religious serenity and raucous music underscores the profound impact of noise pollution on communal spaces.

NOT MUSIC TO THE EARS: Coastal communities of North Goa are regularly subjected to noise pollution.
Preserving Goa’s Art Deco legacy

Despite sporadic efforts and assurances from authorities, the persistence of loud music along the coastal belt underscores a broader challenge in relieving noise pollution, and safeguarding the well-being of residents and visitors alike.

Concerted action is needed, not just during election periods, to enforce regulations effectively and foster a harmonious coexistence between Goa's vibrant nightlife and the peace of its coastal communities.

It is very essential to ensure rigorous enforcement of existing regulations regarding permissible decibel levels, particularly during sensitive hours such as evenings and late nights.

Efforts must focus on enhancing enforcement mechanisms, raising awareness about the detrimental effects of noise pollution and promoting responsible tourism practices.

Only through collective action can Goa reclaim its status as a haven of tranquillity, where the soothing sound of waves prevails over the disruptive clamour of loud music.

Addressing the persistent issue of noise pollution along Goa's coastal belt requires a multifaceted approach involving collaboration between government authorities, law enforcement agencies, businesses, residents and visitors. 

It is very essential to ensure rigorous enforcement of existing regulations regarding permissible decibel levels, particularly during sensitive hours such as evenings and late nights.

NOT MUSIC TO THE EARS: Coastal communities of North Goa are regularly subjected to noise pollution.
7 Goan village walks that will take you back in time…

The government needs to implement regular monitoring and impose severe penalties on establishments found violating noise pollution laws.

Other measures should include implement a transparent licensing and permitting process for businesses, including restaurants, clubs and shacks, with stringent noise emission criteria.

Regular inspections should be conducted to verify compliance with these criteria, and licenses should be revoked for repeated violations.

LET'S MAKE SOME NOISE: Senior citizens of Vagator march with lit candles towards Anjuna Police station to complain about loud music being played at a local club after 10 pm.
LET'S MAKE SOME NOISE: Senior citizens of Vagator march with lit candles towards Anjuna Police station to complain about loud music being played at a local club after 10 pm. Photo: Augusto Rodrigues

The government should also launch comprehensive public awareness campaigns to educate residents, businesses and tourists about the adverse effects of noise pollution on health, well-being and the environment.

Community involvement, like the ‘Anjuna WhatsApp group’ in reporting noise disturbances and promoting responsible behaviour, should be encouraged.

Open dialogue should be fostered, and collaborations between residents, businesses and government agencies to address concerns and find mutually acceptable solutions.

Community forums or advisory committees could be established to facilitate ongoing communication and problem-solving. 

Businesses need to be encouraged to invest in soundproofing technology to minimise noise transmission from their premises. Incentives or subsidies could be provided for establishments willing to upgrade their infrastructure to comply with noise regulations.

NOT MUSIC TO THE EARS: Coastal communities of North Goa are regularly subjected to noise pollution.
At this Goan hideaway, make postcard-worthy memories

Alternative forms of entertainment that do not rely on loud music, such as cultural performances, live music or outdoor activities, should be encouraged.

Businesses could also be encouraged to diversify their offerings to cater to a wider audience without resorting to excessive noise.

Alternative forms of entertainment that do not rely on loud music, such as cultural performances, live music or outdoor activities, should be encouraged.

The government could identify and designate specific areas as entertainment zones, where noise regulations are more lenient, allowing businesses to operate without unduly disturbing residential areas.

Zoning laws to segregate commercial and residential areas effectively should be implemented.

Local communities should be encouraged to participate in policing efforts by establishing community policing initiatives or neighbourhood watch programs. Residents should report noise disturbances promptly and work collaboratively with law enforcement agencies to address issues effectively.

Sustainable tourism management strategies that prioritise the preservation of the natural and cultural heritage of Goa's coastal areas should be developed.

Sustainable tourism management strategies that prioritise the preservation of the natural and cultural heritage of Goa's coastal areas should be developed.

Responsible tourism practices that respect local communities and minimise negative impacts on the environment should be developed. 

NOT MUSIC TO THE EARS: Coastal communities of North Goa are regularly subjected to noise pollution.
Goan summer: A trip down memory lane

Financial incentives, technical support and capacity-building initiatives to assist businesses in complying with noise regulations could be provided. Sufficient resources for law enforcement agencies should be allocated to effectively enforce noise pollution laws and address complaints from residents.

By implementing these solutions in a coordinated manner, Goa can effectively address the persistent challenge of noise pollution along its coastal belt, creating a harmonious balance between the vibrant nightlife and the peaceful coexistence of residents and visitors.

Your Gateway to Goa, India

The Gomantak Times app is the best way to stay informed on anything happening in Goa. From breaking news to the top 10 restaurants to visit, GT helps you navigate your time in Goa.

Download the Gomantak Times app on your Android or IOS device.

Related Stories

No stories found.
Gomantak Times
www.gomantaktimes.com