Rs 100 Fine OUT, Rs 1000 Fine IN? Exorbitant Traffic Fines Send Motorists Fuming
Mangaluru : Gone are those days, when the rich coming in high-end cars, used to park their vehicles wherever they could in front of the pubs/lounges/bars/restaurants, and cooly come out and pay Rs 100 fine to the cops after making a phone call to them to come to the spot and release their vehicles. It was like a paying a small amount to keep their vehicle in secure. Not anymore, since 25 June 2019, Karnataka Transport Department has hiked the traffic fines, nearly ten times more than the earlier fines. Fines for using the mobile phone while driving, wrong parking, exceeding the speed limit and other offences have gone up multi-fold as the Transport Department has cracked down on the “common causes” for accident.
So all you motorists ignoring the traffic rules be prepared to pay more if you’re caught for a traffic violation in the Smart City-Mangaluru. It is learnt that the new traffic fines have been fixed focusing on the offence as opposed to the vehicle category. The revised fines have come into effect immediately after the gazette notification published on June 25. Since then you could see Mangaluru Traffic Cops regularly on the streets than before, cracking down on traffic violators and slapping them with the new fines. Now the illegal parking fee is Rs 1000 increased from Rs 100- and for towing it would be another Rs 650 extra. Since the traffic department had introduced towing in Mangaluru, between March-June they had collected Rs 31 lakhs. Just imagine with the increase of traffic fines now, they could be raking near to crore in the nearest future.
During the Friday Phone-in-Programme Police commissioner Sandeep Patil said, “Since the Government notification with regards to traffic violation are already in implementation, we have already imposed heavy fines on the traffic rule violators. After we received complaints that towing crew are careless while towing the vehicles, and also that they sit on the two-wheelers during towing, we had a Meeting with staffs who tow the vehicles. They have been informed to make an announcement before towing the vehicle. If the owner is close by, then fine should be imposed on the spot. They should make sure that the vehicle is not damaged in the process of getting towed,” he said.
The Revised traffic fines: Exceeding speed limit – Rs 1,000 from Rs 300; Using mobile phone while driving – Rs 1,000 from Rs 100; Driving vehicles without insurance – Rs 1,000 from Rs 500; Parking at ‘no parking’ spots – Rs 1,000 + Towing charges; Driving without fitness certificate – Rs 2,000 – Left to court
Driving non-registered motor vehicle – Rs 5,000 – Left to court. According to the notification, exceeding speed limit will earn the driver a ticket of Rs 1,000 while carrying goods with load projection on either side can get you fined of Rs 2,000. Top traffic police cops in the city have also taken to Twitter to spread awareness on the revision of fines.
Similarly, the different penalty amounts for driving vehicles without fitness certificate have gone up. The notification fixes horizontal slabs for all vehicles: Rs 2,000 for the first offence and Rs 5,000 for subsequent offences, a two-fold increase The fine for driving a vehicle without insurance has been doubled from Rs 500 to Rs 1,000 while the parking violation will attract Rs 1,000 for the first offence and Rs 2,000 for subsequent ones for all types of vehicles.
Confirming the fine increase with Team Mangalorean, traffic circle inspector on duty near Navabharath Circle said, “Fines were fixed on old parameters and most were classified as common causes for road accidents. The revision in fines is also expected to make drivers more alert and to be aware of the importance of following traffic rules for his/her own safety as well as for the others on the road. Therefore motorists need to be more careful where they park their vehicles, and stop breaking traffic rules while driving or riding, in order to save their hard earned money from paying fines. In Drunk and Driving cases fine amount need to be paid to the court and not the cops. Pay your fine amount by card and collect the receipt.fine amount collected either by card or cash goes to the government.”
Sources reveal that Additional Chief Secretary of Forest and Environment Department B Basavaraju, who also holds charge as Principal Secretary of the Transport Department, said the fines have been increased within the limits fixed by the Motor Vehicles Act of 1988. “The highest fines are still low considering that the Act is old. Even when it was amended to include offences like mobile phone use while driving, the fines were fixed based on old parameters. These common offences have been identified as causes for a majority of accidents and curbing them is important in view of the society’s well being,” a senior official from the RTO said.
So citizens have complaints to make regarding motorists breaking rules, you can do so during The phone in programme held every Friday from 10 am to 11 am, where the callers can communicate with Police Commissioner Sandeep Patil, by giving a call on 0824-2220530 or 0824-2220201. Or the other option is to WhatsApp their complaint to mobile number- 9480805300.