Mumbai : In a major crackdown on traffic offenders in the state, transport minister Diwakar Raote on Thursday announced a steep increase in the fines for various offences, right from not wearing a helmet to speeding on the roads.

According to Raote, offences like not wearing a helmet, driving without a license and not co operating with the traffic police will now attract a minimum fine of Rs 500. “Either the bike riders should wear a helmet or they should be ready to pay a fine if they are caught,” he said.

The minister said that there is a tendency to write the number plates in such a way that they look like Dada, Kaka or Mama in Marathi language and this is totally not allowed. Along with this, not having tail lights and not having reflectors on the vehicles will invite a punishment of Rs 1000 from now on, he revealed.  However, it is allowed to write the number plates in Marathi, provided this is also written in English, he added.

The administration has also taken a strict view of those involved in racing of vehicles and those found to be indulging in this will have to pay a fine of Rs 2000, Raote said. Also, not having vehicle insurance and not having registration will attract the same fine, he added.

The whole idea behind hiking the fines is not to earn revenue from the public but to persuade people to follow the rules, he explained. A 10% tax is also being levied on vehicles on the Road Safety Council which will be used to purchase items like speed guns for better traffic management, he said.

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Election for Deputy Chairman of Maha Council on Aug 5

Elections for the post of deputy chairman to the state legislative council are going to be held on August 5, even as the Congress have nominated Manikrao Thakre for this position. On the other hand, BJP has fielded senior legislator Bhai Girkar for this post even though they do not appear to have the requisite numbers for this.  However, despite assuring Congress of its support in this election, it is possible that the NCP may finally end up voting in favour of the BJP. This is a sequel to the understanding between the BJP and the NCP when they had forced Shivajirao Deshmukh out of the post of council Chairman.

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