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File FIR on complaints about pothole accidents: HC to Home Department

The bench is hearing a 2015 PIL filed by Vijayan Menon and others seeking various directions for filling up potholes and maintenance of the roads
Last Updated : 15 December 2022, 23:25 IST

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The Karnataka High Court on Thursday directed the police authority not to hesitate or avoid registration of FIR in case a citizen approaches with a complaint of accidents due to a pothole. A division bench headed by Chief Justice Prasanna B Varale has also asked the BBMP to submit details of representations filed by citizens seeking compensation in pothole-related accidents.

The bench is hearing a 2015 PIL filed by Vijayan Menon and others seeking various directions for filling up potholes and maintenance of the roads. The petition also sought for a direction to provide a mechanism enabling citizens to file complaints about the poor condition of roads.

At the hearing, the bench referred to a newspaper report that the police authorities are neither responding nor registering the FIRs when citizens approach them with cases of accidents due to potholes. The bench directed the BBMP to submit a response with details of representations seeking compensation, the number of such representations and details of any compensation awarded. The bench directed the petitioner to add the home department as party to the petition.

“We are permitting this exercise in the backdrop of certain news item wherein it was reported that even though the citizens approach the police authorities for registering FIRs on account of serious injury being caused or death being occurred due to the worst condition of roads and potholes, the police authorities on majority of occasions are neither responding nor registering the FIRs. Accordingly, we direct that in case a citizen approaches the concerned police station with a complaint, the police authority shall not hesitate or avoid registration of the FIR by raising technical grounds,” the bench said.

In the previous hearing, the bench had directed the regional officer, Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways in Bengaluru, to get an independent assessment done through a senior officer of the repair works and resurfacing of the potholes undertaken by the BBMP. At the hearing, a request was made to depute at least two QC (quality control) teams from the Public Works Department (PWD) to assist the concerned officer in preparing the report. The bench directed the state government to provide necessary assistance by December 23, 2022. Extending time, the court directed the concerned authority to submit the report within six weeks from December 24, 2022.

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Published 15 December 2022, 11:56 IST

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