For Ganesh mandals, Pune Police issues rules about sound systems and dhol tasha troupes

PUNE :The Pune city police on Thursday announced a set of rules about the sound systems and dhol tasha troupes used in Ganesh festival, which is 10 days away. The many Ganesh mandals in the city have to adhere to these rules

On Thursday, Joint Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) Ravindra Shisve issued two separate orders — one for the dhol tasha troupes and the other for entities which rent or use speaker systems during Ganesh festival. These orders will be in force from 6 am on September 2, the first day of the festival, till 10 pm on September 13, the day after the visarjan (immersion).

Police have specified the maximum number of members in a dhol tasha troupe and said no more than 40 dhols, 10 tashas and six zanj, a smaller version of clash cymbals, will be allowed in each troupe. The use of high-decibel bells, along with dhol tashas, has been banned. The number of groups per Ganesh mandal has been limited to two but in the case of Manache Ganpatis — the five traditional mandals which lead the procession — three groups per mandal have been allowed.

The order further stated, “Separate permissions to be taken by the dhol tasha teams for participation in Ganesh installation and immersion processions from the same local police authority. No group will be allowed to go against the direction of the main procession. The groups will be allowed to perform on the route and road junction stipulated in the permission granted to them.”

The order categorically stated that DJ dolby systems will not be allowed in the processions. The mandal will also have to take separate permission for the use of sound systems. The operator of the system, who will have to submit all his details to the police, will be issued an identity card.

These orders are issued every year by the police, in accordance with a 2010 Bombay High Court order and rules under the Environment Protection Act, 1986. In the past, police have filed offences against Ganesh mandals that have flouted the rules announced prior to the festival every year.