Kerala High Court issues instructions
The High Court of Kerala has requested the Commissioner of Transport to take the necessary action through the relevant officers of the Department of Motor Vehicles to ensure that no motor vehicle is allowed to be used in a violating public place. the rules and instructions in place for road safety.
Judge Anil K. Narendran during the hearing of a plea concerning compliance with automobile regulations, ordered the Commissioner of Transport to file a report on the measures taken in application of the instructions issued in a previous judgment dated 28.10.2019. The case was published on 7e July 2021.
This comes after it was observed that despite the clear and detailed instructions issued by the Court on the matter, motor vehicles which did not comply with these instructions were still allowed on public roads, thus posing a risk to the public. road safety in the state.
These instructions were issued in a case in which the applicant, the principal of Sabari PTB Smaraka Upper Secondary School, filed a lawsuit asking the Additional Registration Authority to approve his vehicle class as a educational institution bus (contracted transportation), without insisting compliance with Rule 125C of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules.
However, the Court found that the said vehicle did not meet safety standards and yet had been issued a certificate of fitness by the authorities concerned. This was questioned by the single bench.
In addition, a report from 5e April 2021 where a group of trucks with unauthorized lights, safety glass stickers and clear driver’s vision obstructions had obtained Motor Vehicle Authority approval were reviewed by the court.
It was found that despite several breaches of safety standards, a large number of motor vehicles, likely to endanger the safety of other road users, were still allowed in the public square, despite the precise directives contained in the judgment of this Court dated 28.10. 2019.
Lawyer P. Deepak appeared on behalf of the petitioner, and government special advocate Lawyer P Santhosh Kumar represented the respondents.
Lighting, Light Signals and Retro-reflectors
Motor vehicles with more than three wheels, trailers and semi-trailers, excluding agricultural tractors and special purpose vehicles, are not allowed to install lighting, light-signaling devices or retro-reflectors. , other than those authorized under AIS-008. Using a motor vehicle in a public place without complying with these installation instructions is likely to endanger the safety of other road users.
Therefore, a motor vehicle should conform to the individual specifications of such lighting and light-signaling devices and retroreflectors, including number, position, width, height, length, geometric visibility, l orientation, etc.
In addition, it was ordered that no motor vehicle with an object in front of such lighting, light signaling devices or reflectors was allowed in public space. Likewise, vehicles with âtintedâ lighting (ie headlights, taillights or indicators) or reflectors affixed with tinted vinyl decals have been banned.
âThe light emitted from the additional headlights / lights / flashing lights installed on these vehicles is capable of dazzling drivers of oncoming vehicles as well as pedestrians.
The light emitted by additional headlamps / lights installed on the fairing is capable of directly dazzling drivers of oncoming vehicles, as well as drivers of vehicles traveling in front, indirectly, through their mirrors and / or other surfaces of their vehicle. vehicle. The light emitted by these additional headlamps / lamps is also likely to dazzle pedestrians. Motor vehicles are allowed to circulate in public places after placing objects in front of lighting, light signaling devices or reflectors. A large number of motor vehicles, especially motor cars, are allowed for use in public places after replacing the prototype approved reflectors on the rear bumper with LED brake lights / direction indicators spare “, the court observed.
Detectable and legible registration marks
Motor vehicle registration marks should be displayed on the registration plate in accordance with the mandate of Rule 50 (1) (vi). These registration marks must be displayed clearly and legibly using fonts of uniform thickness. Display of the registration mark using fancy or decorative fonts was prohibited.
The use of the rear registration plate illumination lamp (mark) to illuminate the space housing the rear registration plate was also made compulsory by the Court.
No obstructions on the safety glass
It was noted that vehicles are currently allowed in public places after altering the percentage of visual transmission of light from the safety glass of the windshield, rear window and side windows, by pasting stickers or signs to them. tinted films, in violation of rule 100 (2). These were directed to be deleted.
Likewise, all police officers and government officials have been ordered to remove contraband items, including window curtains, black films, and solar films, from their service vehicles, in accordance with regulations. circulars issued by the State for this purpose.
No obstruction to the driver’s clear vision
No object should be placed or hung in front of the windshield obstructing the driver’s clear vision, both forward and at a ninety degree angle to his right or left.
Use of official emblems or flags on motor cars
No person, including former government officials, other than those authorized under the India State Emblem Rules (Regulation of Use), shall use the official State Emblem in any way. Therefore, only motor vehicles carrying constitutional authorities and other dignitaries are permitted in public places displaying such official emblems.
Likewise, the privilege of flying the national flag on motor cars is limited to dignitaries specified in clauses (1) to (7) of the Flag Code of India. It was also stipulated that the state did not have the power to authorize the use of any emblem / star plaque or the display of any flag on a motor vehicle, other than a vehicle carrying constitutional authorities and other dignitaries. .
Name signs on motor vehicles
The state government does not have the authority to authorize the use of an “identification board” on a motor vehicle, the court ruled. It also prohibited the display of red or blue identification signs on vehicles belonging to cooperative societies.
In addition, no letter, word, number, image or symbol other than the registration number shall be displayed, inscribed or written on the registration plate of a motor vehicle, including a motor vehicle carrying constitutional authorities and other dignitaries.
Anyone who drives or has driven or allows a motor vehicle to be driven in any public place, who contravenes these road safety standards is punished for the first offense by imprisonment for up to three months, or by a fine of up to ten thousand rupees or both. He will be disqualified for holding a license for three months.
For any subsequent offense, he will be punished with imprisonment of up to six months, or a fine of up to ten thousand rupees, or both.
Anyone who, as the owner of a motor vehicle, modifies a motor vehicle, including by upgrading motor vehicle parts, in a manner not permitted by law or the rules and regulations is punishable by imprisonment for up to six months, or with a fine of 5,000 rupees or both.
The certificate of fitness issued to a vehicle contravening one of the instructions or the Regulations may be canceled.
The petitioner had purchased a heavy passenger vehicle registered for the transport of students in February 2018. As it was previously registered as a stage car, the petitioner requested permission to convert the vehicle into a bus from educational institution (contracted transport). However, he received a registration certificate for Stage Carriage, instead of Educational Institution Bus.
The Additional Registration Authority justified this by claiming that in order to change the vehicle class as an educational institution bus, the change had to be made in accordance with Rule 125C of the Central Motor Vehicle Regulation.
The petitioner argued that the provisions of Article 125C of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules only apply to vehicle models approved after 1st October 2014 and addressed this Court.
The additional registration authority was therefore tasked with inspecting the vehicle and submitting a report. But the inspection report was silent on the modifications made to the vehicle for the class change from Stage Carriage to Contract Carriage.
In addition, the report did not indicate whether all the tests specified in section 62 of the Regulations had been carried out. From the photos produced of the vehicle, the Court observed that it exhibited several deviations from the said rules and regulations on motor vehicles (driving).
For this reason, the authorities concerned were implicated as additional respondents to the motion and were invited to file an affidavit explaining the above-mentioned oversights. The defects were therefore corrected and the authorities were asked to make an appropriate decision regarding the class change of this vehicle as an educational institution bus strictly in accordance with the law.
It was observed that motor vehicles which could endanger the safety of other road users were authorized for use in a public place by the authorities responsible for state registration. Thus, by a judgment of 28e In October 2019, the Court published the aforementioned list of guidelines to be followed by all motor vehicles in order to ensure the safety of road users.
Title: The Principal, Sabari PTB Smaraka HSS against the Additional Registration Authority
Click here to download / read the order