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Old 11th March 2011, 13:11   #1
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Default New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

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Content Courtesy : Economic Times

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NEW DELHI: For the first time, the government has decided to introduce strict penalties, including imprisonment and a fine of Rs 1 lakh on car manufacturers for faulty vehicle systems. A new provision would be included in the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 that would make car manufacturers liable for penalty in case of faults.

The penalty would be a fine of Rs 1 lakh or imprisonment of up to three months or both. In case a consumer finds manufacturing faults with the brake system or engine or any other part, he would now be able to lodge a complaint with the state transport authority. The authority would get experts to investigate the fault and then recommend action. The provision , which will be included as Section 182 A in the Motor Vehicle Act , has been included after a spate of complaints from consumers and recent instances of car recall by manufacturers.

The new provision is one of the 30-odd amendments that the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has decided to introduce in the twodecade old Motor Vehicle Act. One of the major amendments is enhancing penalties for speeding, drunken driving and using mobile phones while driving. At present speeding carries a fine of Rs 400. The government has decided to introduce a graded system of penalty by imposing Rs 1,000 fine if the speed exceeds the permissible limit up to 10 km per hour and Rs 2,000 if it exceeds 10 km per hour up to 25 km per hour and Rs 5,000 if it exceeds by 25 km per hour. Even if you ask your driver to speed, a similar penalty will apply to you.

For the first time, mobile phone and other devices will be clearly defined under the law and new provisions would be introduced for using them while driving. So far, the Traffic Police uses a provision which carries a paltry Rs 100 fine for use of mobile phones or not wearing seat belts. Now these would be introduced in the Act. The Government has decided to enhance penalty for violation of traffic signals, using mobile phones while driving and not wearing seat belts or helmet to Rs 1,000.

Another amendment would be for drunken driving. At present there is a fine of Rs 2,000 or imprisonment of upto 6 months or both for first offence . Now, the Government has decided to penalise the driver depending on the amount of alcohol in the blood stream. The present penalty would be if there 30 to 60 mg per 100 ml of blood. If the alcohol content is between 60 to 150 mg per 100 ml of blood, the penalty would be Rs 5,000 or 6 months imprisonment or both, over 150 mg, the fine would be Rs 10,000 or 1 year imprisonment or both. Apart from traffic violations, there are other provisions like changing the colour of a car. At present , the colour that you get from the dealer is what you have to keep.

The government has decided to relax this condition and say that the colour can be changed but an entry has to be made on the registration certificate of the car. The ministry has circulated the draft of amendments and is likely to introduce them either in the special session of Parliament in May or the Monsoon session. The ministry had constituted an expert group under former Road Transport Secretary S Sundar to examine the Act and recommend changes to keep the legislation in sync with the times. The panel has submitted its report. The ministry, however, has decided to take up amendments to the Act in a phased manner. A senior official said, ?There are some amendments that require consultation with states. We would not take them in this set. We would first hold consultations with them.?

Last edited by Klub Class : 11th March 2011 at 13:14.
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:17   #2
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

Rs.1000 fine for not wearing seat belts or helmet is too much and will give more power to police for harassing commuters. Btw, why don't they introduce lane driving law specially for truck driver who always pull their vehicle in fast lane forcing all cars to drive behind them.
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:23   #3
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

guess the speed limit stays at 70.There was talk of upping it to 100 on good highways?
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:24   #4
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

Good move from GOI, including the re-paint option.
But not with the speeding thing.
Am, not a speed freak or street racer, but first make lane discipline strict and do scientific road planning.
A present ridiculous speed limits at nice stretches range from 25-40km/h.That too not a school or other establishments in sight. At the same time,dangerous roads do not have any speed monitoring.
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:30   #5
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

The amendments are actually quite necessary especially the liability a manufacturer has for faulty parts and drunk driving.

There is just one apprehension - the rules have been made stricter, but what about enforcement of these rules. That is the crux. Those who keep getting away should not keep getting away.

And with the quantum of fine increased, the cops now have more margin. Sad, but true.

The rules should also be tweaked to make enforcement more viable and transparent.

Hope, this is at least a beginning.
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:31   #6
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

While the changes to the law are welcome. I am more worried about the implementation part. I just hope the traffic police do not consider this as an opportunity to harass commuters.
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:38   #7
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

while i am against speeding and fully support adhering to speed limits, I must add that the speed limits set are way too low - 50 kmph for bikes and 60 kmph for cars are way too slow. In my opinion, it is a case where infrastructure has developed, roads have developed well, vehicle technology has become advanced by leaps and bounds but the law (read - speed limit value) is probably the same as the 1970s. I agree with Dicky who rightly mentioned about lack of lane discipline. That is a bigger problem. The license approval system has to change first.

P.S - will bribes become more common now (to escape the huge fines)? Sigh!
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:38   #8
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

It's great too see the government increasing the fines applicable for DUI, lack of helmet while riding, use of cell phones and failure to wear a seatbelt. The puny 100 IRS fines meant that committed only paid 30-50 IRS as "bribes".

Considering the significant increase in the fines, I'm sure a while lot more will start adhering to the rules.

IMO using cell phones while driving is the second major reason for close calls and near misses. The first being DUI. Really glad they're taking all these offenses seriously.
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:39   #9
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

Good move, I hope the study and the changes are more comprehensive than what is reported.
There is also a contrarian view on this. Either the fine or the bribe should act as a deterrent.
Right now, even the bribes are not a significant deterrent. Going forward, if this takes place, the bribes would also proportionately increase and it will hopefully act as a deterrent.
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:41   #10
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

I agree with the speed limit issue. In Delhi, with the widest roads of the country, the maximum limit is 50, and I have never seen any car going at 50 or below, except in a jam. Typical speeds in NDMC area, which has the best roads range from 60-70 Kph, and traffic is always smooth with this.

The fact is that roads where rickshaw/cycles are not allowed, and there is no truck movement during the day, should have a 65kph limit, which would be in line with 40mph urban limits around the world. Dual carriageway ring roads and highways are typically at 70-75mph which should be 120Kph for India. Places with schools or single lane a side road with cycles/rickshaws etc., can stay at 40-50kph.

The proposed amendments, if implemented fully, would mean Rs. 2000 fine on half the cars/bikes in Delhi, every day (so about Rs 1.5 Trillion or $35 Bn annual revenue for the govt.), assuming people dont slow down after paying a fine once, which if they do will cause a permanent bottleneck with cars entering delhi from all sides coming along at 80+ kph.
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:43   #11
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

I am happy with more fines for traffic rule violations. That way even the bribes go up and actually hurts them monetarily or at least most of them. Infact it happened to me. I was doing 103kmph in a 90kmph (which is the max) stretch of NH1 and was stopped by cops. Fine was 1500 and bribed him with 500 (standard charge I guess as that's what I have heard from my colleagues). After that I kept below 90 rest of the way (though it wasn't easy and I do say they should increase it to 100kmph).
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Old 11th March 2011, 15:54   #12
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

Its a welcome move. But they need to rethink on the speed limitations first. Some areas of the highway still have the 30km/hr limits printed on the sign boards.

The best would be to bring in a system to decide speed based on vehicle capabilities like power, class, age of vehicle etc. This is because 100km/hr might be dangerous on an ambassador but this might be nothing for a luxury class SUV costing above 40L!!!
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Old 11th March 2011, 16:08   #13
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Max View Post
Btw, why don't they introduce lane driving law specially for truck driver who always pull their vehicle in fast lane forcing all cars to drive behind them.
Will result in more pedestrian deaths will it not? Edit: Sorry I misread you post as keeping the left most lane for trucks.

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Originally Posted by gemithomas View Post
The best would be to bring in a system to decide speed based on vehicle capabilities like power, class, age of vehicle etc. This is because 100km/hr might be dangerous on an ambassador but this might be nothing for a luxury class SUV costing above 40L!!!

Hard for other people to stick to 50 when a SUV rages along at 100kmph!! The law has to be uniform else it will impact on road behavior/psychology and everyone will take exception.
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Old 11th March 2011, 16:18   #14
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

Welcome move by the government. These amendments should also be extended to other Motor Vehicles Act. I had listed applicable fines in this thread. I believe these fines were calculated based on the economy of 1988 and is a pittance for present day road users to pay off. They should have increased these fines by 100x and implement a special scheme by which cops would get a part of the fine as an incentive. Wouldn't that be a deterrent for policemen who choose bribes against fines?
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Old 12th March 2011, 01:04   #15
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Default re: New Motor Vehicles Act: Stricter penalties- Now Cabinet-Approved!

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Originally Posted by moralfibre View Post
... implement a special scheme by which cops would get a part of the fine as an incentive. Wouldn't that be a deterrent for policemen who choose bribes against fines?
Actually, this will prove to be really worse.

Last day, I got caught in Mysore for unknowingly entering into a one way. I parked my car, and went to 'bargain'. They asked for 500 bucks(without receipt), which I flatly refused. and then, guess what? The policemen got pissed and started imposing fines for god knows what all.. Speeding, Reckless driving, Dangerous driving, so and so and so...

I was confused by the roads in the intersection and was merely crawling. The speedo didn't even show speeds, and still the police man was imposing these crimes. .

Finally we settled for 200, with NO receipt.

I'm strongly against anything that gives benefits for policemen. Agreed some are honest, but the majority arnt, and we are to suffer.
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