January 7, 2009 11:04:09 pm
In 2008,record fine collected during traffic drives
For the city police,2008 was a year that saw a major drive to discipline the chaotic traffic. The traffic police department penalised 6.12 lakh people during the year and collected a record fine of Rs 7.4 crore. In 2007,Rs 5.45 crore was collected.
The sudden and strict implementation of traffic rules took the citizens by surprise and was met with stiff resistance from many. The publics reluctance to be tamed on the roads was reflected in 27 incidents where aggressive motorists manhandled policemen.
Police fined the highest number of people in March and September when around 51,000 were penalised,while only 40,000 were fined in February.
From September to December,traffic police impounded more than 4,000 autorickshaws for plying without valid permit. The revenue of Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal went up due to this action. We got a letter from PMPML about the revenue rise, said Deputy Commissioner of Police (traffic) Manoj Patil.
The traffic police are doing a good job. But their action alone wont solve the problem,as nothing is being done to address the road space versus vehicle count issue. Around 650 vehicles are added daily. There is not enough road space for them, said Sujit Patwardhan,founder member of the Pune Traffic and Transportation Forum.
Speaking on the positive effects of the drive,Patil said they received a letter from the State Transport authorities informing them about an increase in revenue because of the traffic police department drive to curb vehicles plying without permits.
By taking strict action against those jumping signals and not stopping at zebra crossings,we are trying to make people aware of the need to follow rules. But we are still coming across a lot of resistance.
Patil said drives for penalising defaulters for driving under the influence of alcohol would be intensified.
In the next few months,we would start a drive to force people to wear seat belts.
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