Friday, February 25, 2005

Traffic offence? Pay up at centre near you

Traffic offence? Pay up at centre near you
New Indian Express

BANGALORE: In a month’s time, the number of traffic enforcement automation centres in the city may go up to 30 from the existing seven. This will help traffic offenders pay fine at a place closer to them.

The centres currently work at Basavanagudi, Indiranagar, Cubbon Park, Upparpet, Rajajinagar and Adugodi traffic police stations besides the Public Utility Building. Plans are afoot to set up one at each traffic police station.

Registration numbers of vehicles violating traffic rules are either videographed or noted down by a constable and sent to the jurisdictional automation centre, where notices for the offence are generated specifying the fine amount. The vehicle owner receives the notice and is told to pay up the fine in a week’s time at one of the centres.

Though the system is working well, there still are some hiccups. The notice itself normally reaches the offender a month or two after the offence. In some cases, the offender gets a second notice even after the fine is paid, apparently because the data is not updated at the central automation centre at Utility Building where the server is located.

There are occasional computer breakdowns or power cuts at the centres and people will have to come back another day to pay the fines. Computers are also not repaired on time since bureaucratic approvals are involved.

This, some officers’ say, is unbecoming of the IT capital. The tech-city can live up to its nickname by having a system where fines can be accepted online.

For this, systems in the automation centres must be made online so that payment data automatically gets updated. One can go further by displaying the video clips online so that offenders can see proof of violations on their own PCs.

Officers also call for an increase in the number of video cameras with mobile traffic squads which videograph offences like signal jumping, wrong parking, rash and negligent driving, and crossing the yellow line.

The officers are happy about the collection performance. Each centre collects about Rs. 40,000 a week, which works to about Rs. 12 lakh from all centres a month. This is apart from the fines that traffic policemen on the roads collect.


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