On Tuesday, the Gujarat government notified of new fines on violation of traffic rules with penalties reduced by 25 to 90 percent than those notified by the Central government. The state government said that the decision was taken on "compassionate and humanitarian" grounds. The new fines will come into force in Gujarat on 16 September.
In the backdrop of Gujarat becoming the first BJP-ruled state to reduce the new traffic fines, road transport and highways minister Nitin Gadkari told the press that the amended Motor Vehicles Act is in the concurrent list and states as well as the Centre can revise and frame rules. He said the idea is not to increase revenue but to make roads safer.
The state governments, however, cannot tweak fines on serious driving rules violations like drunk driving (Rs 10,000), skipping traffic light (Rs 5,000) and juvenile driving (Rs 25,000).
The Gujarat government has largely tweaked fines on violations that come under the "compounded" category. Penalty on not wearing helmet/seat-belt was reduced from Rs 1,000 to Rs 500, blocking emergency vehicle fine was reduced to Rs 1,000 from Rs 10,000 as imposed by the Centre, vehicles without PUC attract Rs 3,000 fine in the state instead of Rs 10,000 and triple riding fine was reduced from Rs 1,000 to 100.
States of Bihar, Odisha and Karnataka, union territories of Chandigarh and New Delhi have brought the new Motor Vehicles Act to force. However, Karnataka deputy C M Laxman Savadi said that the state will consider reducing some hefty fines.
According to a CNBCTV18 report, Bengaluru traffic police had collected over Rs 72 lakh in fines in the first week of implementing the new rules.