The Andheri Regional Transport Office (RTO) has impounded two food trucks, for flouting various rules, in the past three days. This is the first time any RTO office has taken such action against food trucks.
Food trucks, which are common in several countries abroad, started gaining popularity in the city in the past few years. Food is made and sold through these trucks, which have kitchens. Now, several trucks are found parked at selected places and the city has also witnessed a few food truck festivals.
According to sources, the first red-coloured food truck branded as ‘Pettoos’ (MH04 FJ 4545) was impounded from Andheri on Thursday night, while action was taken against another truck (MH 48 K 0014) branded as ‘Mumbai Fusion’ from the same area the next day. Both the vehicles were registered as passenger buses, according to RTO records.
Registered at Vasai RTO, the kitchen at Pettoos used LPG gas without the necessary fire safety apparatus and permissions from fire brigade, sources said.
The Mumbai Fusion truck was also registered at Vasai RTO, but was recently transferred to Andheri RTO. The truck had no valid fitness and pollution under control (PUC) certificates. Though electric equipment were used for preparing food in the truck, THE tax of the vehicle is also due.
“The vehicle has A contract carriage permit that is valid only within the Vasai municipal jurisdiction, but the vehicle was plying in Mumbai, and flouting permit rules,”said Anandram Wagle, motor vehicle inspector, who had earlier seized two illegally-modified limousines in Navi Mumbai.
Wagle said that their RTO office was conducting a special drive against vehicles that ply without valid fitness certificates, after the transport commissioner office’s directive to all RTOs. During the drive, they found both the food trucks on road, flouting multiple rules. Hence, they impounded vehicles issuing memorandums.
According to RTO sources, several such food trucks including some promoted by the MNS and Shiv Sena, are operating on the city’s roads without valid permissions from authorities like RTO, BMC, fire brigade, FDA and others. RTO does not have clear rules which tells under which category the food trucks should be registered.