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New Traffic Rules – India’s Reaction

‘CHANGE’- is a word dreaded by each one of us. We all resist changes around us, no matter how small it is. For people, it is a challenging task to perform an activity in a way different from their daily routines. So, whenever the government introduces a new rule or a new act, the most awaited thing is how do people respond to it. And in this age of social media, it takes only seconds for any reactions, and people begin their meme sessions and other such things.

One of such very recent changes is in the applicability of Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2019, which came into effect on September 1. Although only 63 clauses have been made effective, the reactions are tremendous and worth your attention. The 63 clauses deal with penalties, licences, registration and National Transport Policy, among others. With fines ranging from around Rs 500 to 25,0000 for different offences, it is extensive in its scope.

Motor Vehicle Act
Source: Twitter

The traffic rules have become stricter, and this calls for more caution on the part of the citizens. People can no more be casual about breaking any regulations, let alone avoiding penalties. What is more surprising is that you can now see as many as five police officers in places you would never have expected.

Furthermore, not exaggerating any bit, people have had some of the worst nightmares in the past 4 to 5 days. What would you feel if you were to pay Rs 23,000 in fine for breaking traffic rules?

The people of the country have shown mixed emotions towards the new traffic rule. Some feel that such stricter rules would bring more compliance and lead to more people following all the rules, thus leading to lesser accidents. On the other hand, people have indulged in some very harsh criticism. People believe that if the government wishes to levy such high penalties, then why not provide such quality of roads so that people can comfortably drive. They want the authorities to first correctly assess the quality of the existing roads and face the reality of their conditions and then only blame people for violations.

Moreover, one of the biggest concerns according to me, is that whether this reduces accidents or not?, whether it improves security or not?, one thing that is going to increase is ‘Corruption’.

While earlier people used to settle their accounts in Rs 100 or so, after the levy of the new rules, they would be more comfortable in bribing the official with Rs 1,000 or 2,000 instead of paying penalties ranging as high as Rs 50,000.

Furthermore, is it only applicable to ordinary citizens? As some images of on-duty police officials driving without a helmet were captured and spread across social media. If the law enforcement authority itself does lead the people on the right path, how can they expect ordinary citizens to follow the rules?

On the one hand, the traffic rules are indeed meant for our own safety, and we must be cautious while driving, the other tangent cannot be ignored. We need to figure out what the right way is to solve this never-ending problem.

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