<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The recent change in rules for towing vehicles only after an announcement on megaphones has not given any respite to the conflict between citizens and the on-duty traffic policemen in Mumbai. A lady traffic constable attached with Thane traffic police department was allegedly assaulted by a female motorist in Kalyan when the constable demanded a fine for parking the two-wheeler wrongly.According to Mahatma Phule police officers, Constable Vandana Kawale, attached with the city traffic police department was on the towing van duty when at Sarvodaya Mall gate at Kalyan West found a two-wheeler being parked wrongly. Kawale as per the new rules made an announcement on the megaphone to alert the vehicle owners. When no one approached to claim their the vehicle, Kawale instructed the towing van helper to tow the two-wheeler of which one belonged to Rubana Khan.”Khan charged on the constable and assaulted her. The cell phone belonging to the towing van helper was damaged during the scuffle and after which the two-wheeler was pulled down from the towing van.”, said a Mahatma Phule police officer.
ALSO READ Mumbai car towing incident: How guilty were cops? New video adds twist to the tale”The constable also asked the motorist to pay fine and take the vehicle away but Khan did not co-operate and a formal complaint was filed.”, said the officer.”We have registered a case under sections 353(obstructing public servant while conducting duty), 332(Voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty),504(intent to insult) and 427(mischief causing damage) of the Indian Penal Code.
ALSO READ Motorists to pay more in towing chargesThe woman was arrested and produced in Kalyan court and was sent to Judicial custody.”, said PR Londhe, Senior Inspector, Mahatma Phule police station.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The e-challan system for fining traffic offenders was first-of-its-kind initiative inaugurated at the traffic police headquarters in Worli last October.As a part of the project, about 4,717 Closed Circuit Television cameras (CCTVs) have been installed throughout Mumbai which will record traffic violations, a senior official said.Once implemented, it will reduce the manpower required for fining motorists and help decongest traffic as traffic policemen often have to ask motorists to stop on roadside to explain the offence and hand over the receipt.At present, the Mumbai traffic police issues about 6,000 challans per day by detecting traffic violations, stopping the offender, persuading them, writing of challans and accepting the fine amount. Earlier for police maintaining the account was a time consuming process, however after implementing the system it has been reduced.The system was introduced to reduce human interference, which at times leads to alteration. It also reduces the time spent by traffic officers on actual regulation duty.Around 4,717 cameras have been installed across the city and a team of 25 constables in traffic control room is responsible for generating challans to be sent via SMS.Out of the 25 officials, 20 monitor the CCTVs to catch offenders and five enter details like registration number, location and date of offence into the system to generate a challan.While spot challans have not been discontinued, they have become cashless.500 handheld devices where offenders can pay fines using debit or credit cards have been issued to traffic policemen.The initiative seems to be good as the citizens have been facing lot of trouble due to malfunctioning of the system. Impounding licences has again created the human interference which the police is trying reduce.The e-challan system in a way is a good initiative by the traffic police and is also a transparent process in a way. It is an odious task to deal with traffic cop every-time they catch us. At times, traffic cops find silly reasons to fine motorists but by this e-challan we can avoid this. However, I fear that if there is a technical glitch in the server of traffic police and they fine us wrongly we won’t have any choice but to pay. I am yet to use the system.—Yagnesh Vora, DadarI have never been charged because I don’t break rules, but this is such a good thing to do, as now I know breaking rules will mean that I will immediately get a challan. This is a transparent system as the motorists know the offences for which they are being booked and the exact amount to be paid. No one can get away with lesser fine by bribing their way out.—Gagan Singh Kamboj, Andheri WestE-challan has been a major deterrent for traffic violators as now one can find motorists being extra careful, in fact I have seen several motorists halting their vehicles before the stop line due to fear of being caught on camera. The traffic police needs to intensify and bring more junctions under camera surveillance and the offenders should be sent an e-challan within two days as it will have more impact.—Dipesh Tank, MaladIt’s a good system to have to control and punish the offenders. The implementation leaves a lot to be desired as all vehicles don’t have mobile numbers or email IDs registered with RTO. I believe we must also link Insurance data with vehicle data, Aadhar and mobile number. That way when a violation is committed, subsequent insurance premium starts going higher.—Sandeep Ohri, KandivaliIt is a good move but it is impractical in the current scenario. You cannot expect the public vehicle drivers to abide by a piece of paper or an e-note, which he would receive for breaking the rules. Another aspect is that, even if the car is registered in a person’s name, how can you confirm whether it is driven by the owner. What if there is a theft of the vehicle which is registered in your name? In such a case, if the notice is shot to the owner’s name, then who is responsible for breaking the law?—Santosh Deshpande, ChemburEXPERT SPEAKThe system is doing very well and it’s good that everything is evidence based. But there should be upgradation in sending notices to offenders. Not everyone is able to check fine on MTP app as many of the motorists are senior citizens and people like taxi drivers and auto rickshaw drivers who don’t understand the internet. The police should either send a physical notice at their home or should synchronize the data of motorists in the system so that they come to know about the e-challan that has been issued against them. The issue should be resolved soon otherwise it’s a good evidenced based system for fining traffic offenders.—Dr PS Pasricha, former Director General of police, Maharashtra, and traffic expertWhile the overall system is good there are many loopholes and the police is not able to understand on which scale they should take this system and how to handle it. Impounding licences for collecting a fine is like failure of system, they went back to old system again. The police should take such steps that offenders don’t even think of ignoring the e-challan and pay it as they get it. For that police will have to take some more steps so that the motorists are scared to violate the traffic rule.—Ashok Datar, road expert