Traffic fines may see a steep hike

Those who use mobile phone while driving will have to shell out Rs 1,000 instead of Rs 200.

Parking and traffic violations may soon attract higher penalties, ranging from Rs 1,000 for talking on the phone while driving to the suspension of the driving licence (DL), once a proposal by the transport department is approved.

According to the proposal, not carrying a valid fitness certificate will cost Rs 2,000 (up from Rs 500) and repeat offenders will pay Rs 5,000. Those who use the mobile phone while driving will have to shell out Rs 1,000 instead of the Rs 200. The fine for operating a vehicle without insurance will go up to Rs 1,000 while driving without a valid DL will cost Rs 500 (up from Rs 300).

Transport commissioner V P Ikkeri said the proposal was part of steps being taken to enhance road safety. “Officials said the present fine amount is not enough of a deterrent for many of the violations. As far as parking violation is concerned, we have proposed a Telangana-state model where penalty points are added against the DL number,” he said.

In Telangana, some violations attract points which remain valid for 24 months. For example, five points are awarded to those found “racing and trial of speed while driving”. Those who accrue more than 12 points stand the risk of losing the licence to drive for a year.

Asked whether the measures would be as strict, Ikkeri said the details of the proposal would be revealed once they are identified. “We have adapted the model to our requirements. Once the government notifies the rules, you will know,” he said.

Sources in the government said the proposal has been sent to the Home Department as well as the chief minister’s office. “The Home Department’s concurrence is crucial as we need regular enforcement from the police. We want the measure to come into force without any loopholes,” the source said.

The fines for violations were fixed over a decade ago, in June 2007. “Many offenders pay the fine without much difficulty now and repeat the mistakes. The idea of a higher fine is to make them realise that violations are costly,” an official said.

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