HC assured of criminal action against overloading of vehicles - Mandi Gobindgarh News

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Saturday, June 15, 2019

HC assured of criminal action against overloading of vehicles


HC assured of criminal action against overloading of vehicles

Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, June 14

The state government has undertaken before the Punjab and Haryana High Court that it will apply brakes on the plying of overloaded vehicles. It also assured the bench of the initiation of criminal and other action to put the overloaded vehicles out of gear.

Once the Punjab Government implements its decision communicated to the High Court, the drivers/owners of such vehicles may find themselves facing criminal proceedings involving imprisonment up to three months for the offence of overloading.

The assurance came soon after Justice Rajan Gupta’s bench made clear its intent to examine whether the plying of overloaded vehicles came under the ambit of Section 336 of the IPC on acts endangering life or personal safety of others. The provision entails imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months or fine, or both.

As the case came up for resumed hearing, the state counsel submitted that necessary steps would be taken in light of the provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988. Relevant provisions of the Act and even the IPC would be invoked to prevent overloaded vehicles from plying on roads.

“In view of the statement made by the state counsel, no further direction is necessary,” Justice Gupta asserted while disposing of the petition. Before parting with the order, Justice Gupta called for a status report on the steps taken. For the purpose, Justice Gupta set a two-month deadline.

The developments took place on a petition filed by Santokh Singh Benipal and another petitioner against the state of Punjab and other respondents. Justice Gupta observed that the petitioners had alleged that the police authorities were not taking action on their representations regarding the violation of the provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act.

Referring to certain photographs annexed with the petition, Justice Gupta said the petitioners had all along been contending that overloaded vehicles carrying children were allowed to ply on the roads without any attention being paid by the authorities concerned.

Justice Gupta observed the other photographs also showed that overloaded vehicles as well as those having no licence were plying on the roads. The petitioners had, thus, prayed for a direction to the authorities concerned for complying with the provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act.


What the state counsel stated…

  • The state government assured the Punjab and Haryana High Court of a criminal and other action to put the overloaded vehicles out of gear 
  • Once the decision is implemented, drivers/owners of such vehicles may find themselves facing criminal proceedings involving imprisonment up to three months for the offence

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