Tick­et­less travel in buses may cost you 1,500

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times City - Sid­hartha.Roy @times­group.com

New Delhi: Those found trav­el­ling with­out ticket in a Delhi Trans­port Cor­po­ra­tion (DTC) or clus­ter scheme bus may soon have to shell out a fine of up to Rs 1,500. At present, the fine for trav­el­ling with­out a ticket in Delhi is Rs 200.

The amended Motor Ve­hi­cles Act pre­scribes a fine of up to Rs 1,500, which is com­pound­able to Rs 500. The Act was im­ple­mented in Delhi from Septem­ber 1, but the Delhi govern­ment is yet to no­tify it. As the Act hasn’t been no­ti­fied yet and the quan­tum of fine for com­pound­able of­fences is yet to be fixed, Delhi traf­fic po­lice and trans­port depart­ment are only is­su­ing court chal­lans, and on-the-spot cash fines can’t be paid.

While the fine for trav­el­ling with­out a pass or ticket in the Motor Ve­hi­cles Act, 1988, was Rs 500, DTC had fixed it at Rs 200.

A DTC of­fi­cial said that the quan­tum of fine will be fixed once the Act is no­ti­fied by the Delhi govern­ment. “We haven’t re­ceived any di­rec­tions from the Delhi govern­ment yet. We are call­ing this amount com­pound­able fees, and not fine. If a pas­sen­ger is caught trav­el­ling with­out a ticket, the com­pound­able fees is Rs 200, but if the pas­sen­ger doesn’t pay this amount, he or she has to go to court,” he said.

Tick­et­less travel is a ma­jor source of rev­enue loss for DTC. On av­er­age, ticket check­ing squads of DTC fine 245 tick­et­less pas­sen­gers on ev­ery week day, and 145 on Sun­days and other hol­i­days. Ac­cord­ing to con­ser­va­tive es­ti­mates, DTC loses at least Rs 1 crore a day be­cause of it. “We have about 1,500 per­son­nel in our ticket check­ing squads, in­clud­ing as­sis­tant traf­fic in­spec­tors. Each tick­et­ing squad has three to four mem­bers who can travel in their own ve­hi­cles or be on foot. They can also keep changing buses while check­ing tick­ets,” the of­fi­cial said.

The of­fi­cial added, “Our fly­ing squads have a very tough job as most pas­sen­gers trav­el­ling with­out ticket start ar­gu­ing and try to avoid pay­ing a fine. Also, these 1,500 per­son­nel have the work of check­ing nearly 5,500 buses, which in­cludes not only DTC buses, but clus­ter buses as well”.

File photo

On av­er­age, ticket check­ing squads of DTC fine 245 tick­et­less pas­sen­gers on ev­ery week­day, and 145 on Sun­days and other hol­i­days

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