Kerala State Transport Minister AK Saseendran has written to Union Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari, objecting to the hefty fines under the amended Motor Vehicles Act, asking for flexibility for states to fix the fines.
"It may be noted that the fine fixed in the Act as per the proposal of the Government of India are very high and disproportionate to the gravity of offences," Mr Saseendran wrote.
In three points, the minister urged the centre to bring in an ordinance to amend the provisions under the Act and also pointed out that some states have declared that they won't implement the steep fines.
Mamata Banerjee had declared a few days ago that Bengal will not implement the amended Motor Vehicles Act. Gujarat, a BJP-ruled state, has also slashed the steep fines.
Mr Saseendran appealed for flexibility of the states for fixing fines proportionate to the gravity of the offences and asked for a reduction in fine and imprisonment for offences which do not come under section 200 of the Motor Vehicles Act.
He also urged for the removal of provisions to allow privatisation of the sector. The Kerala government had suggested this to the centre several times, he said in his letter to Mr Gadkari.
Kerala has already issued a notification for the state regarding the new rules on September 1 but is not collecting fines in accordance to the new rules yet.
"We have kept our decision on collection of compounding fees in abeyance for now. We are using this period for awareness creation. We can't go on like this for long, but the centre has to understand that these fines are too hefty. And states need to be provided with means to make the fines proportionate to the offence committed," the minister had said earlier while addressing the media on Monday.
The centre's new law imposing hefty fines on traffic violations has worried many states.
The new rules for traffic violation -- which considers common offences like the use of cellphone while driving, jumping traffic lights and driving on the wrong lane as "dangerous driving" - came into effect on September 1.
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