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Old 6th January 2013, 16:54   #1
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Angry Cop runs away with the License!

This happened yesterday while me, with 4 other friends of mine was on the way to IIT powai for the tech-fest held there. Time being around 12 noon when we started from Borivali, me driving. Was on the SV road when a friend of mine asked me if I had a charger slot in my car. I replied in affirmative and asked the friend in co-passenger seat to get the charger out of the glovebox where it is usually kept.

The friend gets the charger out and is putting it in the socket. Now, the car is a new WagonR and those who know, the charger slot is below the steering near the drivers knees. I was not comfortable with someone fiddling near my knees while driving so told him to hand me the charger and I would put it in the slot.
I took the charger from him and as I am putting it in the slot, a cop pulls beside us on a bike and signals me to stop at the side. I promptly do so.

He stops ahead of me, I get down and ask what the matter is all about. HE asks for my license which I hand over to him. He then tells me that I was using a mobile phone while driving. I was shocked to this reply of his as I didn't even touch the phone while driving and my eyes straight on the road were in no way looking elsewhere. The only thing I had in my hands was the charger. I try to explain him the scene, but as usual attitude, he is not ready to listen.

He then asks for the documents which all I present him. All the documents in perfect shape and completely valid. He then starts writing a receipt and asks us to pay a fine of 1200 Rs. At that point I did not have that much of cash. Then came the statements of license suspension and spending nights in jail and coming to court and all followed. On much request, he is not ready to budge. He gets a call on his phone, and he leaves the very next moment on his bike taking my license and even without handing us any receipt or other papers (pavti as we call it in mumbai).

Now, 5 of us in a fix with a 3-star officer having taken away my license and not knowing what to do. A friend calls up his uncle who stays nearby. He comes to the scene in a some time and we explain him the scene. He has some contacts in a nearby police station from where we get to know which chowky that cop was stationed. Thanks to a friend who promptly took a note of the cops name from his uniform or else we never would have been able to trace him up.

Friends uncle and I go to the chowky where the cop is already waiting outside. Uncle goes and has a word with him and hes not ready to budge. Constantly says license will be suspended and you will have to come to court. At this point, we have got the money, uncle had some and we all could chip in, but he was not ready to accept the fine as well and was adamant on the court point.

Uncle told me to go and wait in the car and some 15-20 minutes later he came with my license. He told me to leave immediately from there.

I am sure he had to bribe the officer as it there was no way I could have made to court as I had made booking for an outstation trip during those days. Also, uncle did not have any receipt with him if he had paid the fine.
I have forgot the episode as a bad luck and hence an entire day wasted.

The reason for posting this here is that what can one do in such a case. The cop runs away with a license and you don't know his name or anything. I doubt going to a police station will be of much help as they would not believe a story of a group of 21 year old just as the cop did not. Not sure what has to be done in such a case and any help would be greatly appreciated. How are we supposed to prove our case? The cop can stop you saying that you didn't wear seat belt even if you had worn.

Please note, I was not rash driving, not speeding, not using a mobile phone, all of them in the car were belted up and also all the documents were in perfect shape.

Mods, creating a new topic because I did not find one for such a problem. If such a thread exists, please merge.

Last edited by carzone : 6th January 2013 at 17:48.
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Old 7th January 2013, 13:25   #2
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Extortion by the corrupt policeman, and nothing else. This is absolute abuse of power.

He basically played with your weakness. The best thing to do in this case would be:

1. Contest it. You have proof via your mobile phone bill that your phone wasn't used at that time.

2. Complain to the higher authorities via a formal letter. I urge you to bring this episode to their notice.

This would entail some inconvenience to you, but it would ensure that this cop thinks twice before extorting any innocent driver again.
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Old 7th January 2013, 14:11   #3
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Red face Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Sad to hear your misfortune.

Golden rule when dealing with Mumbai cops - Never hand over the Licence immediately, delay it as long as possible. If stopped by a cop, park aside, get down and ask for reason of stoppage. Justify your position if you know you havent done anything wrong. If the Cop proceeds with challan, then only show him the licence or for that matter read to him the DL no.

My first line of defence in such cases is argue purely in Marathi, second make them believe they know law more than I do and ask for advice. If these sweet things dont work, with a heavier tone ask him for challan. 95 out of 100 times I have been asked to go without paying any fines. Although I didnt break any traffic rules, but this taught me the art of negotiation esp with the white/brown uniforms.
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Old 7th January 2013, 14:39   #4
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Team,

Please help me understand, how real is the threat to suspend the license ?

He can issue a challan and we have to go to the court to pay the fine ? Is that it ?

Is it ok to talk on phone using Bluetooth headset ?

Last edited by F150 : 7th January 2013 at 14:43.
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Old 7th January 2013, 14:39   #5
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

This is absolute crazy.
Not sure when will these policemen start behaving like policemen
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
Never hand over the Licence immediately, delay it as long as possible.
If the policemen demands for the DL, how do you delay handing over the same to him ?

Will keeping a colored xerox copy of your DL and car's registration card help to avoid these kind of scenario, instead of keeping the originals ?


Cheers
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Old 7th January 2013, 14:45   #6
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Red face Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Schoudhury View Post
If the policemen demands for the DL, how do you delay handing over the same to him ?
Will keeping a colored xerox copy of your DL and car's registration card help to avoid these kind of scenario, instead of keeping the originals?
Never ever carry a duplicate licence, always carry original. The moment you say you dont carry the original, the attitude changes drastically. Never give that slightest opportunity.

If the cop demands the DL, you can delay it by asking him the reason for stoppage. If you are geniunely wronged then handover without delay. If you are not, then show him that you do have the DL and will provide the details once you are confirmed that you are wronged. As long as you are not proved gulity - You are innocent. if the cops are adamant, then ask them for the challan and read out the DL number.
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Old 7th January 2013, 14:51   #7
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Never ever give your original license to cops, it is not required by law unless you are involved in a serious incident.
It is always best to carry a color xerox copy and laminate it. It will look like original license.

Please bring this to the higher authorities notice and also involve media on this. These idiots should not be left alone.
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Old 7th January 2013, 15:01   #8
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Quote:
Originally Posted by carzone View Post
He stops ahead of me, I get down and ask what the matter is all about. HE asks for my license which I hand over to him. He then tells me that I was using a mobile phone while driving. I was shocked to this reply of his as I didn't even touch the phone while driving and my eyes straight on the road were in no way looking elsewhere. The only thing I had in my hands was the charger. I try to explain him the scene, but as usual attitude, he is not ready to listen.
It happened with me once, near Sakinaka. I was waiting to turn right into Marwah Center from Saki Vihar Road. This junction does not have traffic signal, but manned by policemen and traffic wardens. As I was about to turn right, a warden came in front of my car and asked me to stop. I stopped and got down. A policeman joined and said that I was using phone... No amount of explanation helped. He said that my phone is black! Well, majority of phones are black!

As things were unfolding, I recollected a joke. Once there was a competition to find out the best police department in the world. Scotland Yard and our own Mumbai Police were the finalists. They were given the task of recovering a donkey from a forest as the challenge. Scotland Yard went in first and recovered the donkey in 30 minutes. When its turn came, Mumbai Police did not return even after 3 hours. The organizers went into the forest. After travelling for about half an hour, they came across Mumbai Police. They had tied a dog upside down and beating it, telling it to accept that IT IS THE DONKEY.
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Old 7th January 2013, 15:38   #9
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
Never ever carry a duplicate licence, always carry original.
.
.
If the cop demands the DL, you can delay it by asking him the reason for stoppage.
My driving instructor once told me that it's always better to carry an ATTESTED n laminated copy of the DL. That was almost 15 years ago. At that time, the DLs issued from the my state were still in the form of a book. So, I thought he probably said that so that the DL 'book' does not get damaged.

A few years ago in Bangalore, I was stopped by the cops immediately after a LEFT TURN although it was GREEN for me but RED for those whoe wanted to go STRAIGHT. A shady junction so the possibility of a camera at that junction was totally ruled out. When I rolled down the windows and asked the cop the reason I was being asked to pull over, he said I broke the signal!
When I replied "NO", he asked for the DL and asked me to step out. The DL was an attested copy. He took me to an SI (who looked like shikari shambu to me from a distance) who was waiting in the corner dealing with some college kids for helmet-less riding. When it was my turn, he took my DL and asked for a 500Rs fine. I was in no mood for negotiation as he simply refused to accept my claim. And heck there's no proof.

Instinct prmpted me to just walk away from the scene ignoring the HOWLS n GROWLS of the monkeys in uniform. And I did that. The SI stood there aghast while the "chela" cop tried threatening me by standing in front of my car and acting as though he's taking note of my number plate.

The guys must have had my DL copy for lunch or supper. I did not care. I just left from the scene. Its been almost 5 years and I haven't received any violation notice either. But, since then I made it a point to only have an attested DL copy in my wallet UNLESS it's a long road trip.

Last edited by mempheS.D : 7th January 2013 at 15:41.
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Old 7th January 2013, 15:59   #10
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Schoudhury View Post
This is absolute crazy.
Not sure when will these policemen start behaving like policemen

If the policemen demands for the DL, how do you delay handing over the same to him ?

Will keeping a colored xerox copy of your DL and car's registration card help to avoid these kind of scenario, instead of keeping the originals ?


Cheers

I have been asked to produce DL when I have made mistakes. Like not taking the sun films off or stopping the car in time & crosssing over to zeebra line at signal.

I always have a xerox copy of license & RC which I have handed over to cops.

According to the laws (lil that am aware of or read in news paper) cops are not supposed to stop you unless you have committed any offense. Not sure that's how it works.

Discussing politely in the local language is of great help most of the times. I have been let off couple of times using it ( they caught me for keeping sunfilm, I removed it last weekend).
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Old 7th January 2013, 15:59   #11
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Always keep an attested copy ready. Another way is to laminate a scanned copy and keep it handy. It is quite right that the cop was trying to extort money from you.
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Old 7th January 2013, 16:09   #12
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

**A long but important and hopefully, a useful post**

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Extortion by the corrupt policeman, and nothing else. This is absolute abuse of power.

He basically played with your weakness.
It is really sad but the fact is that Traffic Police, be it in Mumbai, Pune or anywhere else in India, have this attitude of harassing the public for money or pampering their egos and show off their power. What they fail to understand that, in the end, they are PUBLIC SERVANTS. People should willingly feel like going to them for any kind of help/support that one might need in emergency, instead, people ensure they do everything so that the cops do not get involved. A horrible state of affairs, but that's the fact.

Coming to the topic, I would like to pen down certain tips which might be useful to everyone while dealing with these blood/money suckers.

1) CRUTIAL DOCUMENTS:

NEVER EVER hand over your crutial documents (licence,insurance papers etc.) to the cop immediately after he demands them. Once you hand them over to him, you go on in a defensive mode immediately.

Also, NEVER hand over your original license copy.Always keep a true color copy with you and hand it over if necessary.

2) VEHICLE KEYS:

Normally after pulling over, cops have this habit of shamelessly pulling off your bike/car keys and taking them into custody. If this happens, you are no less than stranded, helpless and more importantly, again in DEFENSIVE mode.

ALWAYS, whenever you are asked to pull over, get your vehicle aside to a standstill and IMMEDIATELY remove your bike/car keys and secure them safely in your pocket.

3) SPEAK CONFIDENTLY AND QUESTION:

Cops tend to harass people who, to them, appear to be weak at heart. Usually, educated people are easy "bakras". Whatever you tell them with a "I-AM-AFRAID" face will fall on deaf ears which will make you helpless.

DO NOT give the cop the impression that you are afraid/perturbed of being pulled over. Talk to him/her calmly but confidently. Question him/her regarding your wrong doing (according to them) and explain your point properly. In all probablility, a confident discussion will lead to a good end result (I have benefitted multiple times with this).

4) CONCEAL COMPANY I-CARDS:

When pulled over, ALWAYS conceal your company I-cards (we normally tend to keep them on the dashboard if in car, hanging around the neck if on bike or even in the car) by tucking it away neatly in the glove box.

REMEMBER, your fine or bribe rate is often decided when they stare at your i-cards "Itni badi company me kaam karte ho, aur jeb me 500 Rs. nai rakhte? " Translation - "you work in such a big company, and don't keep 500 rs. in your pocket?"...kind of question can be easily avoided.

5) GET DETAILS:

Once pulled over, people generally panic and in the bargain, they NEVER take details of the cop.

ALWAYS, ask the cop his full name, where is his reporting chowky etc. so that you have a reference incase it is needed. Better, take his cell number, if you can (on a lighter note, this can be useful, when you get pulled over next time, you can tell the new cop that you know this cop from this chowky personally, hell yeahh it helps ).

6) TAKE RECEIPT:

If incase you were at fault, pay up the fine BUT do not forget to take the challan/receipt.

7) THREATEN, POSITIVELY:

When, for no fault of your, the cop pulls you over and starts giving you attitude, ask him to give it in writing about whatever he's saying. Also, tell him you are connected to media (I tell cops i write columns for Pune Mirror). Pretend that you are taking his picture ON HIS FACE. This will deflate their confidence to a great extent, and see the magic working after that (yes, this is a "been there-done that" tip)

8) KNOWING THE LOCAL LANGUAGE HELPS:

If in Maharashtra, always address the cops as "Kaka" instead of "Mama". Believe me, they feel offended if called Mama (likewise in other languages as well). Talking to them in the local language helps and also pacifies them to a great extent. Your "I'm-an-executive-in-a-top-company" language won't help one bit.

9) DEALING WITH LADY COPS:

Lady cops are generally more strict , but, more soft spoken, understanding and will listen out to you. So, make your point clearly and confidently to them and you've won half the battle.

10) SHOW RESPECT:

Last, but not the least, show respect to the cop, male-female alike. Remember, in this hopeless country, the power is in their hands. If yo show attitude, disrespect to them, then be ready for innumerable hassles, waste of time,money and energy to get back your keys, documents everything.

So, the mantra is, deal with these guys calmly but confidently, and you should be ok.

Cheers.
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Old 7th January 2013, 16:16   #13
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Red face Re: Cop runs away with the License!

@Carzone,

One thing that confuses me is that why did the cops demand 1200/- for the offence which they felt you committed when the actual fine for the offence is Rs 100/-. Not saying that you committed the offence. Pls see attached list of fines for the offences. Your supposed to be offence is sr, 24.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Traffic offences & penalties.pdf (91.5 KB, 44171 views)
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Old 7th January 2013, 17:00   #14
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ironshark View Post
**A long but important and hopefully, a useful post**

4) CONCEAL COMPANY I-CARDS:

When pulled over, ALWAYS conceal your company I-cards (we normally tend to keep them on the dashboard if in car, hanging around the neck if on bike or even in the car) by tucking it away neatly in the glove box.

REMEMBER, your fine or bribe rate is often decided when they stare at your i-cards "Itni badi company me kaam karte ho, aur jeb me 500 Rs. nai rakhte? " Translation - "you work in such a big company, and don't keep 500 rs. in your pocket?"...kind of question can be easily avoided.

Cheers.
This is not applicable in cases where you are working for the PRESS. If you have flaunt it. I know its wrong to do so but unfortunately we live in a country where these things work.

I have also had an incident where a cop in civil dress pulled me over. He asked for DL and told me that he was a cop. I demanded to see his ID card to which he threatened to drag me to the police station. I kept my cool and agreed with him. Guess he had collected his DAILY TARGET and he simply let me go.

GOLDEN RULE that I follow: Cops are ordinary human beings and there's no need to panic or be worried ESPECIALLY if you have not done anything wrong.
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Old 7th January 2013, 17:07   #15
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Default Re: Cop runs away with the License!

I completely agree with IronShark here
Quote:
DO NOT give the cop the impression that you are afraid/perturbed of being pulled over. Talk to him/her calmly but confidently. Question him/her regarding your wrong doing (according to them) and explain your point properly. In all probablility, a confident discussion will lead to a good end result (I have benefitted multiple times with this).
And henceforth will be carrying a print out of Traffic Offences and Penalties that Ghodlur has attached.

Please bear in mind one simple truth. The traffic cops are creatures of our own creation. trust me it is no easy feat to stand on the open road in all the pollution (air and noise, both)..BUT, that is no justification of how they use or misuse their position..so I try to treat them just like any human being, but never fear them.

My modus operandi, if flagged down, I pull over, wait in my car, he stopped me, he comes to me, and when he does walk over, I roll down the window and "Hello Officer, how may I help you today". I speak to him only in English till he fumbles, then I switch to Marathi.

Only Rule I follow, NEVER Argue, he meets tonnes of such blokes all day, these cops cant handle someone who is unafraid of them and still nice to them.

PS, thanks for the detailed post IronShark, and Ghodlur, that sheet is my new mantra.
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