Police Commissioners and Superintendents of Police file status reports

The Madras High Court Bench here on Friday directed Police Commissioners and Superintendents of Police in the 13 districts under its jurisdiction to make helmets mandatory for two-wheeler riders in accordance with Section 129 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988.

A Division Bench comprising Justices R. Sudhakar and V.M. Velumani passed the interim order on a public interest litigation petition filed by T. Dharbar Raja of Uthangudi near hear through his counsel G. Thalaimutharasu and B. Meltiue.

The judges ordered that the police officers should communicate the court orders to all their subordinates and make sure that no life was lost due to the failure of a two-wheeler rider to comply with the statutory requirement of wearing a helmet.

The orders were passed after Special Government Pleader V.R. Shanmuganathan submitted reports filed by Police Commissioners and SPs on action taken by them to implement a 2007 Government Order making helmets compulsory.

In his report, the Tirunelveli SP said 193 cases were registered in 2007 for non-compliance of the rule and a fine of Rs.13,700 was collected from violators, whereas in 2013, the fine amount collected was Rs.2.63 lakh and the number of violators touched 5,937.

Sanjay Mathur, Madurai Commissioner of Police, said 34,407 cases were booked and Rs.34 lakh was collected in 2007. But, the figures dropped drastically in 2013 to 5,328 cases involving a total fine collection of Rs.5.3 lakh.

Shailesh Kumar Yadav, Tiruchi Commissioner of Police, said 4,299 cases were booked and Rs.4.29 lakh was collected in 2007. The figures swelled to 85,852 cases and the fine collection went up to Rs.85.85 lakh in 2013.

Tiruchi Rural SP S. Rajeshwari stated that just 77 cases were booked in 2007 and Rs.38,500 was collected towards fine in the district. The total fine amount improved to Rs.80,650 collected from 1,002 violators in 2013.

Theni SP J. Mahesh said 12,136 cases were booked and a fine amount of Rs.85,61,000 was collected in 2013. Sivaganga SP Ashwin M. Kotnis said 4,780 cases were booked in his district and Rs.3.84 lakh was collected as fine in 2013.

Virudhunagar SP S. Maheswaran, Tuticorin SP M. Durai and Dindigul SP T. Jeyachandran did not provide statistics.

The SPs of Thanjavur, Pudukottai, Karur, Kanyakumari and Ramanathapuram were yet to file their reports.

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