Wearing seat-belts are also compulsory for car drivers
Nagpur: When the traffic lights turns red, many two-wheelers, three-wheelers and four-wheelers stop till the signal become green. However, one look at the other road users especially the two-wheeler riders will tell how 90% of the two-wheeler riders are not wearing helmets. Many car drivers choose not to wear seat-belts. If that is not enough, they continue to speak on their mobile while driving. One can find many cars with all the glasses with 90% dark films or are totally opaque.
Sheer arrogance especially the youngsters. They feel that they are above the law. They can violate any rule including Motor-Vehicle Act and assume that they can get away with it. With the limited staff of the traffic department of Nagpur police manage the smooth vehicular movement, ensure apprehension of violators of Motor-Vehicle Act etc. On many occasions they manage to get away with these offences only because of sympathy shown by cops. However they do not care for their own safety not of the pillion riders or other road users.
Choose one: Rose or Challan
While re-enforcing the drive for compulsory helmets for two-wheeler drivers, traffic cops attached with various police stations in the city adopted novel ways to encourage the two-wheeler riders wearing helmets by giving them a rose.
However, in order to penalize those who were not wearing helmets the Traffic Cops issued Challans. This drive by the Traffic Department of Nagpur Police to make it compulsory for all two-wheeler riders to wear helmet was started in February 8, 2016. After a few days breathing period for acquiring helmets, the drive resumed on February 10, 2016. It continued for many days. However, with monsoon, many citizens assumed that the traffic department will spare them and they stopped wearing helmets on the pretext that one can’t wear helmets on top of rain-coats. One the drive resumed on July 15, 2016, as many as 4630 offenders have been challaned.
Joint Commissioner of Police Santosh Rastogi has issued directives to all the police stations in Nagpur Police Commissionerate that the Senior Police Inspectors who are in-Charge of each police station should issue directions to the police personnel working in their police stations to wear helmets. Joint CP Rastogi has made it clear that even the cops will not be spared in the drive to enforce compulsory helmets for two-wheeler riders. Joint CP Rastogi has added that disciplinary action will be initiated against the erring cops who do not wear helmets or seat belts. He has also directed the Senior Police Inspectors who are in-charges of police stations to take suitable actions. He said that action would be initiated under Section 129 of Motor Vehicle Act 1988. As far as the compulsion for wearing seat belt goes, the law will be applicable for the co-rider in the front. The city police has around 8500 police personnel.
They practiced what they preached!
In order to practice what they preach, the traffic cops of each police station who were deployed on every part of the city did not even spare their own colleagues. Many cops were challaned for moving on two-wheelers without wearing helmets.
In Gittikhadan area alone, nearly 40 cops were challaned.
Circulars issued to schools, colleges & Govt. offices
The traffic department has sent circulars to schools, colleges & Government offices directing the heads of the institutions to make it compulsory for the students or staff to wear helmets.
While speaking to Nagpur Today, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic) S Patil said that instead of looking this rule which is thrust upon them, let all the two-wheeler riders look it as safety equipment and a protection for their own lives. We want them to be safe and sound.
Heads of institutions should ensure adherence of rule
Some of the senior citizens in the city opined that it should become compulsory for every two-wheeler rider to have a helmet for buying fuel/petrol. All the heads of various government offices, private companies should make it compulsory for all their staff or employees to wear helmets to and fro the office/company. Failing to wear helmets should invite a penal action of deduction of one-day’s salary or a similar action.
By Samuel Gunasekharan and Ravikant Kamble.