The central cabinet today approved a five-fold increase in fines under the Motor Vehicle Act, and substantial hike in compensation to accident victims. These changes will be incorporated in the Motor Vehicle Act through an amendment, which is likely to be introduced in forthcoming Parliament session and only after it the same would be implemented.
If the blood alcohol level below 30 mg (per 100 ml blood) will not be considered an offense. If it ranges between 30 and 60 mg, the proposed penalty is six months’ imprisonment and/or Rs 2,000 fine.
Between 60 and 150 mg, the penalty could be one-year imprisonment and/or Rs 4,000 fine. Any repetition of the offence within three years could mean 3 years’ jail term and/or two-time cash penalty (Rs 8,000). For those found heavily drunk — over-150 mg blood alcohol level — the penalty is likely to be two-year jail and/or Rs 5,000. Anyone repeating the offense within three years will be slapped with four years’ imprisonment and/or Rs 10,000 fine. Also, the offender’s driving licence will be canceled.
Most of the fines are up to Rs.500 from Rs.100.
Reckless driving, over-speeding, over-loading, driving without licence, jumping signals and riding two-wheelers without helmet will now attract a fine of Rs.500 from the current Rs.100.
Auto drivers refusing to go in hire will also attract Rs.500 fine. Drivers talking on cellphones while driving, not wearing seat-belt; vehicles cutting the yellow line, breaking lane discipline, overtaking from left, parking in no-parking zone, violating the no-entry signage and carrying schoolchildren in excess of capacity will also attract Rs.500 fine.
A few people were happy that the fines have been increased and this will surely make them think twice before breaking the rules, but also people were heard speaking about corruption being increased as each one will try to get away with some hand shaking as the fine amount now is hefty.