| Vehicles parked haphazardly flout no-parking rules on SP Verma Road in Patna. Pictures by Ranjeet Kumar Dey |
Most city motorists on whom the Patna district transport office (DTO) served notices for flouting no-parking rules did not turn up for the special hearings on May 7 and 8.
Sources at the DTO said the office sent more than 50 notices to errant motorists of which only three or four turned up.
Patna district transport officer Dinesh Kumar said: “The traffic police sent us more than 200 complaints of vehicles flouting the no-parking rule and requested for the cancellation of their driving licences. Of these, notices had been served on 50. The owners had been asked to come to the DTO office to offer explanations on May 7 and 8. However, only three to four vehicle owners came and submitted written explanations.”
On April 3, former Patna traffic superintendent of police (SP) Rajeev Mishra had launched a drive to take tough action against vehicles found wrongly parked in congested areas apart from the normal fine. Under this, the photographs of such vehicles had to be clicked and sent to the DTO for cancellation of their licences. Since then, the police claimed to have sent many proposals to the DTO.
“Acting on the proposals, the DTO had sent the notices to vehicle owners. The DTO will now send fresh notices to all. If they do not appear again, we would think of some other action. Those who submitted written explanations would be summoned again after two weeks. Their replies would be analysed and unbiased decisions would be taken,” said officer Dinesh.
The poor response to the notices has worried the cops. “Since the drive started, the police have cut down spot fines for wrong parking in lesser congested roads. Those parked on busy streets are just being photographed and sent to the DTO office. More than 20 cameras have been provided to traffic policemen. Fewer wheel locks are being used. On a daily average, more than 50 photographs are sent to the DTO. More than 700 proposals of licence cancellation have been sent. It seems that people consider wrong parking a meagre offence. If this attitude continues, the police will have to resume fining them on the spot and in absentia again,” said a traffic police officer.
Wrongly parked vehicles are fined Rs 600.
“The drive was started to make people realise the seriousness of wrong parking. A majority of errant drivers, when caught, either deals with the officer somehow or pay the fine. But the prospect of licence cancellation is serious. The police think if some licences are cancelled, drivers would start taking things seriously,” said the officer.