Pune city police has come with an innovative idea to deal with traffic fine defaulters. They are already compiling a database of such people and linking it to their Passport verification details. Its been only four days since the law has been implemented and the police has come up with 92 violators who have applied for the passport but has not cleared off their fines. These applications will be kept on hold during the verification process.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (special branch) Ashok Morale said, “These applications were put on hold during the verification process. We may send a negative report about these applications to the passport office, which will then take a call.”
A traffic police official said, “Thousands of violators have not paid fines ranging from Rs 200 to Rs 1,200 despite the police having issued them e-challans, making repeated appeals and launching a special fine recovery drive. Now, even if the verification report of the local police station is positive, a traffic violator will not get a new passport unless the fine is paid.
The official also added, “Once the fine is deposited, we will send an independent report to the foreigners’ registration office (FRO) that the violator has cleared the dues under the Motor Vehicle Act and we have no objection if a passport is issued. The FRO will then send a report to the passport officer.”
It is actually a very positive initiative taken by the Pune City Police, which might cut down the number of traffic violators altogether and the fines due will also get paid in time. It will be a good decision if other cities also pick up the same procedure, although it is to be mentioned that many people have thought this law to be a very harsh one.