Handling charges for vehicles not authorised: Govt

Handling charges for vehicles not authorised: Govt

Handling charges for vehicles not authorised: Govt

It has become a standard practice of dealers of many vehicle brands sold in the country to charge customers anywhere between Rs 5,000 and Rs 30,000 in case of passenger cars and Rs 2,000 to Rs 5,000 in case of two-wheelers, as handling, logistics and incidental charges.

“But these charges are not a part of the price of the vehicle. They are neither authorised by the manufacturer nor by the Transport department. This collection is not sanctioned by any law even. These charges are illegally collected by the dealers to enrich themselves at the cost of gullible customers,” says Waseem Menon, the founder of Drive Without Borders, an NGO that is fighting against the levy of handling and logistics charges.

The Transport departments of Delhi, Kerala and Telangana, he says, have issued public notices to dealers and circulars to the public, and have warned that erring dealers would be brought to book and their trade licences cancelled if they continue to fleece customers.

The Bengaluru-based NGO, which has been pursuing the case against dealers for a long-time now, has sent a representation to the Transport Commissioner’s office without any success, though. 

A reminder sent after a week did not yield any result.

Drive Without Borders then launched a petition on change.org urging the Union Transport Minister and Transport Ministers of all states to stop dealers from levying handling and logistics charges. Memon, the force behind the movement, says they are seeking legal recourse and would knock the doors of the High Court soon.
 When contacted, Transport Commissioner Ramegowda said: “These charges are not authorised by the RTO department” and that these do not conform to the rules of the Transport department.

What do the companies have to say? Maruti Suzuki manager Revathi P said: “Handling and logistics charges are not allowed and we have asked our dealers to stop charging it from commuters.”

However, there are others who say company norms allow them to charge customers. Mukesh K, representative of Skoda Handling/Logistics said: “The charges are allowed as per company norms.” 

Ajith G, a Hyundai representative, also said: “The company norms allow handling/logistics charges and that is why dealers charge the fee.” But both do not mention the source or any law that authorises these norms. 

 

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