Everything about the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill 2019

Recently, the Government of India had passed the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill which provisions for safer and better roads in the country. The Bill was introduced to Lok Sabha on July 15, 2019, and was passed on July 23 while the Rajya Sabha passed it on July 31.

The Bill makes way for various penalties for traffic violations, vehicle recall, and protection to good Samaritans apart from others. With the number of fatalities due to road accidents in India being the highest in the world (1.46 lakh annually), the government felt an amendment to the Motor Vehicle Bill would help reduce these fatalities and also imbibe in the citizens a sense of responsibility. A notable change to the initial Motor Vehicle Act is a hefty charge of Rs 10,000 for any citizen who does not give way for an ambulance on the road.

The fines for traffic violation have increased significantly, with fines ranging from Rs 1000- 2000 for over speeding to Rs 1 lakh for violating driving licenses. Below is a list of reformed fines for traffic violation:

  • Over Speeding – Rs 1000 to Rs 2000
  • Driving without insurance – Rs 2000
  • Driving without a helmet – Rs 1000 + 3-months license suspension
  • Disobedience of the orders of authorities – Rs 2000
  • Unauthorized use of vehicles without a license – Rs 5000
  • Driving despite disqualification – Rs 10,000
  • Dangerous driving – Rs 5000
  • Drunken driving – Rs 10,000
  • Driving without seat belts – Rs 1000
  • Overloading of vehicles – Rs 20,000

A few other notable changes on the MV Act include:

Mandatory AADHAR to claim a driving license and vehicle registration

Victim family would be provided a compensation of Rs 2 lakh or more in hit-and-run death cases

Citizens who come forward to help accident victims will be protected from civil or criminal liability. Also, it is not required for Good Samaritans to disclose their identity to the police or medical personnel

The government can recall vehicles in case the vehicles’ engine or components do not meet the standards. Manufacturers can be fined up to Rs 500 crore in case of sub-standard components or engine

Central government to constitute a Motor Vehicle Accident Fund which would, in turn, provide compulsory insurance cover to all road users in the country. The insurance would be used to claim treatment of injured persons in accidents; compensation to an accident victim in a hit-and-run case; any other compensation prescribed by the central government

The Bill calls to set up a National Road Safety Board by the central government. The Board would advise both state and central governments on various aspects of road safety, traffic management, licensing of vehicles, road safety standards, and the likes

State governments are to ensure electronic monitoring and enforce road safety on urban roads, state highways, and national highways

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