Over 600 vehicles caught for violations in a month in B'luru

Over 600 vehicles caught for violations in a month in B'luru

Transport violations in the City are quite high if the number of vehicles booked and seized and penalties levied is any indication.

The Transport department seizes on an average more than 600 vehicles and generates a revenue of nearly Rs 40 crore in a month in its drives against violators. The department conducts drives almost every alternate day, which amounts to about 15 drives a month, with each drive netting around Rs 3-5 crore penalties.

The most frequent violation the department has found is non-payment of lifetime tax, which on an average is 10 per cent of the value of the vehicle one owns. It can go up to 40 per cent depending on the vehicle. Owners find this payment high and are ready to take the risk of running their vehicles without lifetime tax permits.

“They hope that in the lakhs of vehicles that ply the City, they would go unnoticed,” says Joint Commissioner, Transport, Narendra Holkar, who is at the helm of the Regional Transport Office (RTO) drives.

The other frequent violation is non-payment of tax payment by vehicles from outside Karnataka. According to rules, outsiders should pay taxes if they stay for more than 30 days in the State, but most visitors don’t pay assuming that they would not be noticed in the crowd.

“They want benefits from Karnataka, but won’t pay taxes,” says Holkar and adds that when asked why they were not paying tax, they reply, “We are outsiders, so why should we pay.” There is low awareness among outsiders about paying transport tax for a stay of 30 days and more, he added.

The tax authorities are also catching rules-violating private buses. These buses pay tax for one purpose, but use the permit for very different purposes.

Senior transport officials pointed out: “We have caught buses carrying explosives, bikes and such other risky luggage. The nature and extent of luggage is usually different from what the permit has been given for. If we keep quiet, such illegal activities will go on. What if petrol leaks from the bike? If it is close to the engine compartment, anything can happen including fatalities. So, we have to monitor buses frequently to handle permit violations.”

In the wake of the serious drive against vehicles, RTO officials say, some people have become wary of plying their vehicles without payment of tax and now voluntarily go to RTO offices to pay up the tax. The fear element has crept in and people don’t want to take chances of getting caught and going to court.

“We see many people pay taxes on their own. It’s a good sign,” RTO officials said. The pressure has to be kept up to induce more people to come voluntarily and pay up taxes at the respective RTOs, they added.

Narendra Holkar, Joint Commissioner, Transport: They (owners) hope that in the lakhs of vehicles that ply the City, they will go unnoticed.

Top 3 violations

 Non-payment of lifetime tax
 Non-payment of tax by non-Karnataka vehicles
 Permit violation by private buses

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