HC stays notification banning pillion on below 100 cc bikes

The Karnataka High Court on Friday granted a stay on the state government's notification banning pillion seats on two-wheelers with an engine capacity of less than 100 cc.

Justice B V Nagarathna, while hearing a petition filed by Hero Motocorp Ltd and TVS Motor Company Ltd, granted a stay on the operation of the rule 143(3) of the Karnataka Motor Vehicles (KMV) Rules 1989 which bans pillion seats on two-wheelers below 100 cc. The judge granted the stay after the state government informed the court that they would consider amending the rule. The petitioners had moved the court challenging the constitutional validity of rule 143 (3) of the KMV rules. According to the petitioners, the authority to frame and change a rule rests with the Central government.

The petitioners stated that Rule 123 of the Central Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 does not specify an engine capacity but only states some safety measures to be included as attachments in motorcycles with pillion seats. The petitioners added that rule 143(3) of KMV was introduced in 1989 but was brought into effect only from October 23, 2017, after a high court bench's observation. The court was hearing an appeal filed for compensation in a motorcycle accident case where the vehicle capacity was less than 100 cc. The court had observed that pillion seats were allowed despite the rule existing since 1989.

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