Thiruvananthapuram: The state government cannot cut down the fine amount for traffic-related offences increased through Motor Vehicle Act amendment which came into effect on 1 September, the Central government has explained.
The Central Traffic secretary has replied to a query filed by state traffic secretary KR Jyotilal seeking flexibility in deciding the fine amounts.
The Centre's letter says that a relaxation in the fine is illogical and cannot be considered. In this scenario, the government has asked traffic commissionerate to submit recommendations and instructions to execute the act.
The state law department will explore the legal options to bring down the fine amount. The state may approach the Centre once again if no alternatives are found.
The state government thinks that besides the fine amount, the fees fixed for permit renewal of vehicles including autorickshaw are exorbitant. If the earlier fee was Rs. 2,000, the new figure is Rs. 10,000.
Though Motor Vehicle department officers do not see abnormality in fining for offences including drunken driving, over speeding and minor driving, they are of view that minor offences should be fined low.
It is also observed that officers are becoming reluctant to charge fines as the amount are high.Further, If heavy fines are imposed, and the owner refuses to pay the fine and questions the action, the officers are bound to prove the offence. For this, fool-proof evidence should be collected. This will turn a headache and increase workload, says a section of the officers.
The government is examining options for relaxation in fines vying all the situations.