Over 200 erring motorists booked under Operation Screen

Motor Vehicles Department personnel intercept vehicles with tinted glass windows in Kochi on Sunday.   | Photo Credit: Special Arranagement

A total of 218 motorists were booked on Sunday in various parts of the district on the charge of using sun films or curtains on glass windows and windscreens of vehicles, under Operation Screen, a special fortnight-long drive undertaken by the Motor Vehicles Department (MVD).

Those charged include a film actor from a neighbouring district, whose car was intercepted at Kundannoor. He too will have to pay ₹1,250 as penalty, MVD sources said.

Action was initiated against both erring cars and vans. Their owners will have to remove the tinted sheets and produce the vehicles before the Regional Transport Office (RTO) concerned. MVD personnel attached to various RTOs and the office of the Enforcement RTO (Ernakulam) undertook the drive. Penalty was also imposed for offences like improper / fancy registration number plates, not having fitness certificate, evasion of vehicle tax, rash driving, and helmet-less driving.

The drive will be intensified in the coming days, for which more squads will be deployed in arterial and side roads, said Babu John, Regional Transport Officer, Ernakulam. “The special drive was undertaken from Sunday, since there was a spike in rule violations, and the High Court has been closely monitoring them,” he added.

E-challan generated

Under the new enforcement system, e-challan, which was recently given legal validity by the Central Motor Vehicle Rules, is generated once the offence is detected. Vehicle owners cannot cite excuses or challenge the action, since the rule violation along with the image of the vehicle is automatically uploaded on the Vahan website. No further transactions involving the vehicle will be possible anywhere in India unless the penalty is remitted and blacklisting, if any, is vacated.

MVD officials said they often encounter pressure when vehicles of senior government officials are challaned for offences.

The Supreme Court had directed a clampdown on vehicles with shaded or curtained windows and windscreen in the wake of the Nirbhaya case. Most cars and other vehicles come with up to 30% tinted glasses, permissible under law.

The MVD drive is against sticking tinted sheets, since the glass has to crumple into granules in case of an accident. Sticking tinted sheet will hamper this, posing risk to life. All vehicles, including ambulances, ought to adhere to the rule, since ambulances illegally ferrying people and cargo have been nabbed, they added.

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Printable version | Mar 6, 2021 6:02:28 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/over-200-erring-motorists-booked-under-operation-screen/article33596202.ece

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