Speed governors are a must: HC

BANGALORE: It’s mandatory for all new vehicles falling under the notified category to install speed governors. The high court on Thursday, pulling up the state government for wrong interpretation of the apex court’s stay order, firmly asked the transport department not to register any new vehicles falling under the notified category without speed governors. “The apex court only stayed this court’s order but not the notifications wherein speed governors were made mandatory for new vehicles. This was not challenged anywhere. There was no grievance over new vehicles. The only contention was about old vehicles that have been registered earlier,” the court observed. It went on to add: “In our February 12 order, we clarified the position vis-a-vis new vehicles. What is the confusion? We have heard you are registering vehicles of neighbouring states without speed governors. It seems you have become magnanimous towards neighbours. We can issue a contempt notice in this regard.” The Bench headed by Chief Justice Cyriac Joseph fixed May 31 as the final disposal date for the PIL seeking fixing of speed governors be mandatory for all notified vehicles. Y N Nanjappa, a resident of Bangalore who lost his son N Chetan in a road accident in 1996, filed the PIL claiming that by the June 29, 2007 notification, the government had once again postponed the date of implementation of speed governors scheme from July 1, 2007 to January 1, 2008 without any valid reason. This had put road users as well as pedestrians at great risk. The high court had earlier given directions for taking necessary steps to reduce motor vehicle accidents, on August 22, 2006. After this, on November 29, 2006 a notification was issued for extension of the policy of fitting speed governors on old vehicles plying on the roads, to December 1, 2006. Thereafter it was extended to May 1, 2007 and on further to June 1. Another notification dated June 1 extended it further to July 1, till finally to January 1, 2008. On January 22, the government indefinitely put off implementation of the scheme for old vehicles. This order was stayed by the high court on February 12 and a direction was issued to implement the scheme within a month for those old vehicles for which fitness certificates have already been issued. The last date was fixed as June 30, 2008. This was stayed by the apex court and it asked the high court to dispose the matter expeditiously. Every year, on an average 10,000 persons are killed, 1.4 lakh injured and 60,000 disabled due to road accidents. “Though these instruments are now available in the market, the state government is back-pedalling on the issue time and again without any ground,” Nanjappa had claimed. Sugar communication stayed The high court has stayed the March 31 communication issued by commissioner for cane development and director for sugar, asking sugar factories to pay farmers Rs 160 per tonne in addition to the SMP fixed for sugarcane. South India Sugar Mills Association has challenged the communication. Notification quashed The high court has quashed a notification dated September 24, 2001 seeking to shift the National Institute of Miners’ Health from KGF to Nagpur. The court has asked the government to retain the present institute, at least as a branch. G S Ravindra Rao and J Jayakumar, two scientists working at the institute, claimed that the shifting order was issued without assigning any valid reason. Police to file affidavit A division Bench has directed Bangalore police to file an affidavit on progress in the investigation pertaining to a missing 16-year-old girl from Jeevan Bima Nagar. The girl, a student of Oxford High School, is missing since January 6, 2008. Her father, a retired government servant, has filed a habeas corpus petition. Two new judges Justice B Shrinivasa Gowda and Justice K N Keshavanarayana will take oath as additional judges of the high court on Monday. The number of judges in the high court will now go up to 39, as against the 41 required.
30 May 2008, 0116 hrs IST,TNN


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