Maharashtra Government Issues Notification Increasing Fines For Traffic Rule Violations
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Pune, 3rs December 2021: Road safety NGO Parisar, which has been advocating for the implementation of stricter penalties as per the Motor Vehicles Amendment Act 2019, welcomes the much-awaited decision by the Govt of Maharashtra to notify the new offences in the “compounding notification” which allows challans with the higher fines to be issued by traffic police to traffic rule violators.
Parisar had been following up with the Transport Minister to issue the compounding notification for two years. Most of the States have already issued the notification, with only states such as Tamil Nadu and West Bengal yet to comply. Road Crashes kill around 1,50,000 people every year (400 every day).
Maharashtra recorded 13,940 road fatalities in 2020 as per the latest National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) report, the second highest in the country. The MV Act was amended in 2019 specifically to improve the road safety record and to help achieve the national target of reducing road traffic deaths and injuries by 50% by 2030.
Parisar asserts that this decision will certainly improve road safety, reduce fatalities and ensure better traffic discipline among road users.
Sandeep Gaikwad, Senior Program Associate at Parisar said, “While we welcome the issuance of the notification, it is disappointing to see that fines for non-use of helmets and seat belts have remained the same which is a matter of great concern”.
The new notification however does mandate a 3-month licence suspension for the offence. “We are not sure how this will be implemented, since this is possible only if the person is apprehended on the road. CCTV enforcement makes this very difficult”, he added.
It is pertinent to note that other States have not diluted the provisions and raised traffic fines as per Amendment Act.
International evidence shows that driver behaviour is influenced not only by the quantum of the fine but also the surety of getting caught and the certainty of having to pay the fine immediately.
“With no increase in fines for key risk behaviours such as non-use of helmets and seat-belts and speeding of two-wheelers, as well as the current CCTV camera based enforcement, which has led to wide scale non-payment of fines, we are doubtful that this will bring down road fatalities to the extent that is needed. We would suggest that fines should be raised periodically, as provided in the MV Amendment Act”, said Ranjit Gadgil, Program Director at Parisar.
Comparison of key road safety fines with previous notification and provisions in the MV Act as amended in 2019
Section of Act
August 2016 notification
December 2021 notification
Penalty in the MV Act
180 / 181
Allowing someone to drive or driving w/o licence
Driving with suspended licence
Over speeding of two-wheeler
Over-speeding for car
Rs 1000 – Rs 2000
Over-speeding for other vehicles (trucks, buses etc)