Now, vehicle makers have to pay for faulty designs

Drunk driving will invite Rs 2,000 or imprisonment of six months

In a bid to bring vehicle manufacturers under  the ambit of the Motor Vehicles Act, the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highway has decided to introduce strict penal action, including imprisonment and fine up to Rs 1 lakh or three months’ imprisonment or both, for vehicle makers for faulty systems in the automobiles.

As per the proposals, a new provision will be included in the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, where the car manufacturers are liable for penalty in case of faults in the vehicle.
The decision to include this  provision was taken in the wake of  increasing road accidents due to faults in vehicle manufacturing, a senior official in the Ministry told Deccan Herald.

If any manufacturing defects are found either in the engine, the brake system or any other part, the consumer can file a complaint with the state transport authority.  Acting upon the complaint, the authority will investigate the issue and recommend for action.
The ministry is also working on bringing several changes in the Motor Vehicle Act, including enhancing penalties for drunken driving, over-speed, using cell phone while driving and other traffic violations.

For over-speed, against the existing fine of Rs 400, the government will propose a graded system of penalty, which involves imposing Rs 1,000 fine if the speed exceeds the permissible limit up to 10 km per hour and Rs 2,000 if it exceeds up to 25 km per hour and Rs 5,000 if it exceeds by 25 km per hour.

Besides, the passenger of a vehicle, too, can be involved if he has asked the driver to increase the speed: a similar penalty can be slapped on the passenger also. The ministry is also proposing to impose Rs 1,000 fine on  the use of mobile or not wearing seatbelt or helmet and all these will be clearly defined in the Act itself.

Now, the traffic police fine  just Rs 100 fine for use of mobile phones while riding  vehicles or for driving without  wearing seatbelts. For drunk driving, the fine will depend on the quantity of alcohol in the blood stream. If the alcohol content is between 60 and 150 mg per 100 ml of blood, the fine will be Rs 5,000 or six-month imprisonment or both, if alcohol content is over 150 mg, fine will be Rs 10,000 or one-year imprisonment or both.

Drunken driving now invites Rs 2,000 or imprisonment of up to six months or both for first offence, if alcohol content is between 30 mg and  60 mg per 100 ml of blood.

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