AS they continue with the momentum of intensified drive against helmetless riders, numbers show that the Pune City Police has fined the riders in 1.35 lakh cases in the first 18 days of the year, compared to 78,000 in 2018. Officials have reiterated that the action of this intensity will continue till the target of majority helmet compliance is achieved.
After several failed attempts in the past to fully implement the helmet rule in the city, the Pune City Traffic Police had launched an intensified drive with largest possible resource allocation and specific goals since first day of the year. Since that day police have been taking action against an average of 7,500 helmetless riders, both directly on the roads and via e-challans through the CCTV system.
According to the figures from the traffic control branch, from January 1 to 18, a total of 1.35 lakh cases of riders without helmet were recorded of which 82,000 were directly on the road and 53,000 were through e-challans. This is compared to the 78,000 through last year and of which 40 thousand were in the month of December since the announcement of the drive.
The Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic), Tejaswi Satpute, said: “As we speak about these numbers of the actions taken, we want to stress that these are not what we are targeting. Rather these actions are just the means to enforce a rule, which ultimately saves lives. We will continue with this momentum, till the time we reach a significant level of compliance. We are seeing very satisfactory results and in many of the areas as much as 60 to 70 per cent compliance has been seen. We also plan to take action against targeted groups in the coming days.”
He added: “When we say 60 per cent compliance and taking into account 30 lakh riders in our jurisdiction, that still leaves around 12 lakh or more riders who are still going helmetless. That is a significant number.”
Asked about the cases of some four-wheeler riders or rickshaw drivers receiving e-challans for helmetless riding, an officer said: “That number is as minuscule as 10 to 15 out of the 1.35 lakh. It happened because of misreading a number. We don’t see it as a problem like it is being made out to be.”
The data regarding road accidents over the years in the city show that an average of 350 deaths in the city are recorded in road accidents every year and of these, half are two-wheeler riders. In these cases 99 per cent of the riders are without helmets.