As if the new enhanced traffic fines, including ₹10,000 for not having Pollution Under Control certificate, were not enough, motorists in Rajasthan may have to pay additional fines if their vehicles have text, slogans or symbols on them. According to an order issued by Rajasthan government, people will not be allowed to display text and symbols showing their caste, current and previous designation in their organisation, own name, village name, profession, affiliation to political parties, slogans etc on their vehicles.
The SP Traffic of Rajasthan has issued an order on 3rd September to all the district police officers informing about the ban on slogans, text and symbols on vehicles, especially on windscreens. The order was issued as per a recommendation sent by the home ministry on 20th August, asking the police to take necessary action in this regard.
The home ministry took this decision after they received a letter dated August 9 from Jaipur based Civil Rights Society wrote a letter to Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot requesting the same. The organisation claims that the practice of writing own caste, designation, name, village, various symbols have been increasing daily, which is creating an environment of disharmony in society. Saying that such hatred has reached its peak, the letter states that casteism is reflected in such practice.
Civil Rights Society says that various governments are having to struggle a lot in combating caste-related issues. As a result of that, people from other castes have got a chance to raise their voice and to make unreasonable demands from the government. This is a matter of concern, they say.
They also claim that such text and symbols on vehicles are also dangerous for road safety as such unnecessary symbols, slogans etc can distract the attention of drivers, which may cause accidents.
Therefore, under the rights of citizens to live in an environment of equality, the government should issue immediate order banning caste, designation in organisation, former posts, own name, name of the village, various symbols, text and slogans from the number plate and elsewhere on private vehicles.
It may be noted that the ban has been imposed in private vehicles, government vehicles are exempt from this. Most government vehicles carry the names of department, designation, place etc, which would have violated the order if it was applicable for government vehicles also.
Although texts, slogans and symbols have been banned on vehicles, the order does not specify any fine for violation of the same.