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New traffic rules to promote corruption among the traffic cops: AAP

In a joint statement, Leader of Opposition (LoP), Harpal Singh Cheema and deputy leader of Opposition, Sarabjeet Kaur Manuke said that hike in the fines won’t help stop traffic violations on the roads, saying the traffic police was not equipped with the adequate infrastructure.

SNS | Chandigarh |

A day after Punjab government put into force the amended Motor Vehicle Act in the state with hefty fines against serious traffic violations, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) said the imposition of hefty fines on traffic violators would promote corruption among the traffic deployed on the roads to check violations.

In a joint statement, Leader of Opposition (LoP), Harpal Singh Cheema and deputy leader of Opposition, Sarabjeet Kaur Manuke said that hike in the fines won’t help stop traffic violations on the roads, saying the traffic police was not equipped with the adequate infrastructure.

Quoting information obtained through the Right to Information Act, Cheema said in 1966, there were 4,000 vehicles in the state, the traffic police personnel were meagerly 1,200 heads.

The number of vehicles had crossed the one crore mark while the number of employees had trundled at a snail pace touching the 1,535 figure, he added.

The AAP leader said in the Moga district only, there were 29 traffic police personnel, while the situation in other districts was no better. He said more than 15,000 police personnel had been deployed with politicians and top-ranking officers of the state.

Cheema said a sizeable chunk of the traffic police deployed on the roads was corrupt from top to bottom and lacked basic infrastructure, stating that until or unless the general awareness on adhering to the traffic norms was not taken from the school level to top levels, observance of zero political interference in traffic police functioning, traffic violations would not stop even if the fine was raised ten times.

Munuke asked as to who should be held responsible for the deaths that took place due to road mishaps due to stray cattle and dogs and weather-beaten roads, saying that due to the lopsided policies of the successive governments in the state, more than 900 precious lives were lost on the Ludhiana-Moga highway, while more than 40 were lost on Rajpura GT Road. “Aren’t these traffic violations on the part of the successive governments and the highway authority?” she asked.

As per the amended Motor Vehicles Act, Punjab government has proposed maximum Rs 10,000 fine for not providing way for fire services vehicle or ambulance or other emergency vehicles along with disqualification for holding license for three months, for driving vehicle without permit and violating permit conditions, and for driving vehicle during disqualification or suspension of license or procuring of license when not legally authorized to do so by concealing facts. For the offenses like speeding or racing, the state has kept Rs 5,000 for the first offense, and Rs 10,000 for the subsequent offenses, against the Centre’s Rs 5,000 fine.