The union cabinet today approved a five-fold increase in fines for traffic rule violations and a four-fold hike in compensation to accident victims as also suitable amendments to the Motor Vehicle Act.
Under the proposed amendments, the fine for drunken driving will range from Rs2,000 to Rs10,000 and imprisonment from six months to four years.
In cases where alcohol level is 30 mg per 100 ml of blood, it would not amount to an offence, sources said.
However, if it is between 30-60 mg per 100 ml of blood, the proposed penalty would be six months imprisonment and/or Rs2,000 fine.
In case the alcohol level is 60-150 mg per 100 ml of blood, the penalty would be one-year imprisonment and/or Rs4,000 fine. If the offence is repeated within three years, the penalty would go up to three years imprisonment and/or Rs8,000 fine.
For those who are found heavily drunk with alcohol levels of over 150 mg per 100 ml of blood, the penalty will be two years imprisonment and or Rs5,000 fine. Repeat offence within three years will attract a penalty of four years and fine of Rs10,000 besides cancellation of licence.
Compensation to victims will be Rs1 lakh in cases of fatal accidents and Rs50,000 in cases of grievous hurts in hit-and-run cases. The amendments are mainly intended to deal with offenders who violate traffic rules repeatedly, official sources said.
These amendments will be introduced in the forthcoming budget session of Parliament for incorporation in the Motor Vehicle Act.
The penalty for using mobile phones while driving will be Rs500 for first offence and Rs2,000 to Rs5,000 for subsequent instances. The Act will also clearly define such instruments as ''any application, which can receive and transmit voice, text and picture."
This means that not only talking on phone but also sending text messages and using hands-free instruments would also be considered an offence.
Penalties at a glance
|Speeding || |
Rs1,000 (first time) Rs2,000- to Rs5,000 (subsequent offences)
|Rs400 (first time) Rs1,000 (subsequent offences)|
|Riding without helmet/seatbelt ||Rs1,000 to Rs1,500 (subsequent offences) ||Rs300 (first offence)|
|Using mobile ||Rs500 (first offence) Rs2,000-5,000 (subsequent offences) || |
|Jumping signal ||Rs500 (first offence) ||Rs100 (first offence)|
|Drunken driving ||Rs2,000 to Rs5,000 and/or 6 months to 2 years jail (first offence) || |
| ||Rs10,000 and 4 years jail (subsequent offences) || |