Govt proposes freebies for mishap-free roads

Programmes to be funded by fees collected for issual of smart cards


The State Transport department could soon be conducting eye check-up camps for drivers and affixing reflective red and white strips on the front and rear side of your vehicle as a road safety measure. All for free.

The State government has shortlisted about 23 programmes under ‘Transport Welfare and Road Safety’, which will be funded by the fees collected and remitted to the Consolidated Fund of the State under its smart card project for issuing driving licences (DLs) and registration certificates (RCs).

The programmes proposed include a mix of modernisation projects, purchase of gadgets, creating awareness about road safety among the general public. Implementation of the programmes will be supervised by a committee chaired by the Chief Secretary. A host of officials from various departments are on the committee, which is likely to meet in October.

Smart card project

In June this year, the State government, under a public-private partnership initiative, launched a project to replace existing driving licences and vehicle registration certificates with smart cards embedded with a memory chip. The initiative was to ensure tamper-proof vehicle documents.

As many as 80,000 smart card DLs and RCs have so far been issued at various Regional Transport Offices (RTOs) in the State.

“We will first achieve a target of one lakh DLs and RCs and ensure that the smart card project reaches every nook and corner of the State. We will then take up the programmes proposed under Transport Welfare and Road Safety in a phased manner”, Transport Commissioner Bhaskar Rao said.

A new smart card with computerised chip is issued at a cost of Rs 200, while the renewal of driving licence in computerised chip smart card form will cost Rs 250 each.

For issue of registration certificate in smart card format an amount of Rs 200 is charged. There are 65 lakh driving licence holders and 75 lakh vehicles registered, in the State.
Among the programmes shortlisted include, popularisation of GPS/GPRS in vehicles, purchase of breath analysers, purchase of speed guns to check overspeeding, supply of reflective jackets and batons for enforcement staff.

The funds collected under the smart card fee will also be used for conducting eye-testing camps for drivers, fitment of reflective red and white strip on front and rear side of transport vehicles at the time of renewal of fitness certificate.

Other programmes include construction of driving tracks in RTO offices, conducting awareness programmes related to road safety, implementation of highway patrolling system and purchase of mobile weigh bridges.

Proposed plans

* Popularisation of GPS/GPRS in vehicles
* Purchase of breath analysers
* Purchase of speed guns
* Supply of reflective jackets and batons
* Free eye-testing camps for drivers
* Fitment of reflective red and white strip on transport vehicles
* Construction of driving tracks in RTO offices
* Implementation of highway patrolling system
* Purchase of mobile weigh bridges.
* Conducting awareness programmes related to road
safety

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