On 18.08.2015, the Committee constituted by the Supreme Court of India to monitor and measure implementation of road safety laws in the country issued directions to the States/UTs to implement road safety laws. The Committee was of the opinion that stern action should be taken against the violators of the law and exercise the discretion under Section 19 of the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988 read with Rule 21 of the Central Motor Vehicle Rules, 1989 by passing an order disqualifying the offender from holding a driving license for a specified period and also by seeking imprisonment wherever it is provided under the law.
The directions issued by the Committee are as followed:
- Driving at a speed exceeding the specified limit, jumping red light, carrying overload in goods carriages and carrying persons in goods carriages, driving under influence of drugs and drinks and using mobile phones while driving will attract Suspension of the licence for a period of not less than 3 months under Section 19 of the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988 read with Rule 21 of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989.
- Helmet laws be made applicable all over the State/UT both for main riders and the pillion riders.
- Police should prosecute the offender and seek imprisonment as prescribed under Section 185 of the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988 even for the first offence in case a person is found driving under influence of drinks or drugs.
- Persons violating seat belt laws to be made subject to Road Safety Education and Counselling before imposition of fine.
Directing the State/Union Territories to submit Action Taken Reports at the end of every 3 months starting from 1st Sept, 2015, the Committee came to a conclusion that unless strong and urgent measures are taken, the number of accidents and fatalities will continue to remain high.