The Maharashtra Traffic Police have issued e-challans worth ₹104 crore in the first month of the amended Motor Vehicle Act coming into force, which increased the traffic fines by many folds, but the rise in fines has hardly acted as a deterrent.
Over 14 lakh e-challans were issued in the state, of which only 2.15 lakh challans, which makes up a meagre 15 per cent of the total challans, worth ₹11 crore have been paid.
According to the figures acquired from the state traffic police, the new amended motor vehicle act which came into force on December 11 has not proved to be a deterrent for the violators as the violations continue to soar high.
From December 11 to January 11, a total of 14,27,515 e-challans were issued to motorists for various traffic violations like riding without a helmet, signal jumping, dangerous parking among others.
An official said that of the total e-challans issued in the first month worth ₹104 crore, only 15 per cent of violators, which come off to only 2,15,840 e-challans valued at ₹11 crores were paid, while the rest remain to be unpaid.
"The Motor Vehicle (Amended) Act was deemed to be a deterrent, however, the steep rise in fines has resulted in no shift of violations. We will, however, keep the efforts on sending notices, reminders to the violators of clearing their dues," added the officer.
A total fine of ₹93 crore is pending for 12,11,675 e-challans issued in the state. The data revealed that a whopping 2,78,473 e-challans were issued for violations of riding without helmets, while 1,67,489 were issued for speeding. Subsequently, 1,46,685 e-challans were issued for dangerous parking, signal jumping attracted 1,24,795 e-challans and 1,14,095 e-challan were issued for driving without a license among others.
The amended Motor Vehicle Act (MVA) increased compounding fines for different traffic offences like travelling without a helmet on a two-wheeler has increased from ₹500 to ₹500 for the first time and ₹1,500 for the second and subsequent times. Fines for talking on the mobile phone while driving has been increased from ₹200 to ₹500.
Officials, however, believe that even if the amount of fines levied on violators has risen, it hardly matters unless the violators pay up or there is a steep decline in violations.
“It may take time to further discipline motorists, but there has to be a start somewhere," said a senior state traffic police official.