The fear of heavy penalty under the amended Motor Vehicle Act that kicked in from September 1 has been compelling Delhiites to get the required pollution certification done for their vehicles in a haste. According to the transport department, the number of pollution under check (PUC) certificates made in the last one month in Delhi has broken all records.
According to reports, almost 14 lakh pollution certificates have been issued in a span of a month, which is almost a four-fold increase from the average. Earlier, on an average, around 3.5 to 4 lakh PUCs were issued in a month.
As per the amended Motor Vehicle Act, the offence of not having a pollution certificate for your vehicle, which earlier attracted a first time fine of Rs 1,000 and Rs 2,000 the second time will now attract a fine of Rs 10,000. The rule also states that PUC tests are mandatory in Delhi after every three months.
The high penalty for not having a pollution control certificate (PUC) is derived from the provision under section 190(2) ) of the amended Motor Vehicles Act. It says any person who drives or allows his/her vehicle to be driven violating “control of noise and air pollution” as well as road safety standards shall be liable to pay Rs 10,000 fine and/or up-to one year jail and disqualification of holding a driving licence. For repeat offence, the fine will be Rs 10,000 and/or imprisonment up to six months.
According to the revised Act, this provision has been put under the category of the compoundable offence, which means the state governments will have the power to tweak the fine and penalty for not having PUC or violating the noise standards.
In the Pollution Under Control (PUC) test, vehicles are checked for emissions of smoke, carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons and other air pollutants. Based on the test, a PUC certificate is issued to certify that the vehicle meets emission and pollution control norms.
Petrified of this increased penalty, Delhiites have been queuing up at pollution checking centres across Delhi for PUC (pollution under check) certificates for their respective vehicles.
Owing to the huge rush of vehicles for pollution under check (PUC) certificates caused by enhanced fine under the amended Motor Vehicle Act, Delhi government has directed the test centres to remain open till 10 pm.
Since the implementation of the Act, the volume of vehicles seeking PUC certificates at 940 odd test centres across Delhi has gone up by more than four times, according to officials.
The central government has recently amended the Motor Vehicle Act and made it more stringent to bring discipline in road traffic.