In another measure to rein in rogue Blueline buses, the Delhi High Court on Tuesday told the state government to hold owners of errant buses in contempt of court if their vehicles violated safety rules laid down by the Supreme Court.
“When the guidelines limiting the speed to 40 km per hour, installation of speed governors and lane driving are not adhered to, the particular vehicle is violating the apex court’s order. Let the owner be the one who gets the maximum punishment. Haul him up for contempt,” said the bench of justices Mukul Mudgal and P.K. Bhasin.
A Blueline owner can be imprisoned for six months if found guilty of contempt of court. The court felt that the killer fleet — which has claimed 66 lives this year — could be reined in only if the owners were held accountable, since the drivers have become the scapegoats in most cases.
In order to curb accidents, the court said an impounded bus should not be allowed to ply for a month. At present, errant buses are impounded for a maximum of 15 days after which they are back on the roads with the same driver out on bail.
“We want to hit the owner. Let him feel the pinch with the revenue loss for a month. Let his bus lie at a workshop and undergo fitness checks. This is the only way to ensure that he appoints well-trained drivers,” said Justice Mudgal.