THE Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court Tuesday stayed all state government circulars related to knowledge of Marathi for getting auto permits. The stay came before admitting a petition by Vidarbha Auto-Rickshaw Chalak Federation.
A division bench comprising Vasanti Naik and Justice V M Deshpande was hearing the petition that challenged government resolution (GR) of October 23 last year, and subsequent notifications issued on February 20 and 24, that made it mandatory for autorickshaw drivers to know Marathi language and appear for a test.
Citing Rule 24 of the Maharashtra Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, the petitioners said it mandates metal badges to a person authorised to drive public service vehicles.
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It, however, is required by the person to satisfy the authority about his topographical knowledge of area of operation and working knowledge of Marathi and any one of the languages commonly spoken there.
“The judges agreed with the petitioner’s contention that knowledge of Marathi was not mandatory for issuance of auto permit and stayed the three circulars issued by the government,” said petitioner’s advocate Anil Killor.