No loudspeakers for azaan, only human voice allowed: Allahabad High Court

The Allahabad High Court today allowed ‘azaan’ from mosques but said that the use of loudspeakers couldn’t be permitted. The court said that ‘azaan’ was a part of Islam but using loudspeakers were not a part of the religion. The court said that using loudspeakers for ‘azaan’ was an infringement on the rights of others since it disturbed their sleep.

The Allahabad HC also directed that district administration not to cause hindrance in the same on the pretext of guidelines to contain Covid19 unless such guidelines are being violated. In its ruling it said that Azaan may be an essential and integral part of Islam but the recitation of Azan through loudspeakers or other sound-amplifying devices cannot be said to be an integral part of the religion, warranting protection of the fundamental right enshrined under Article 25 which is even otherwise subject to public order, morality or health&to other provisions of part III of the Constitution of India.Thus, under no circumstances, sound-amplifying devices can be permitted to be used between 10.00 p.m. to 6.00 a.m. by the district administrations.

The HC said that the petitioners have failed to bring on record or even plead that they sought any such permission for the use of sound-amplifying devices, for a recital of Azan from their respective mosques and, therefore, their use without such permission would be illegal and cannot be accorded approval by this Court. However, in case any such application is filed before the concerned authorities, that may be dealt with in accordance with law including Noise Pollution Rules.

The order has been passed on petitions seeking directions that the Muslims in the Districts Ghazipur and Farrukhabad may be permitted to recite Azan through “Muezzin”, by using sound-amplifying devices. Petitioners had contended that the restrictions imposed by the administration are wholly arbitrary and unconstitutional since they do not, in any way, violate the guidelines issued for the containment of the pandemic.

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