Newly-built driving test tracks in Patiala gathering dust

  • Vivek Gupta, Hindustan Times, Patiala
  • Updated: Mar 19, 2016 20:26 IST
The newly built modern facility of driving test centre on the Nabha road in Patiala. (Bharat Bhushan/HT Photo)

The newly-built modern facility of driving test tracks on the Nabha road, which has been created with an expenditure of over Rs 50 lakh, has been gathering dust for the past three months.

The idea behind these new tracks was to check the applicant’s driving skills with right precision before issuance of the permanent driving licenses, which was supposed to be a big change from the current system, which is ineffective.

HT learnt that due to delay in technical inspection and final furnishing of tracks, a lot of time has been wasted and hence the delay.

The local transport office sought permission from its head office to run the tracks soon after these were completed in last week of December. However, the transport secretary directed the officials here to get the track checked from the technical experts before operating it, which sources said, was not done on time.

Recently, the architect department gave the technical nod to run the tracks. Further, a lot of delay took place in providing internet connectivity as well as electricity supply at the new facility.

When contacted, district transport officer Gurpreet Singh Thind said, “We are almost at the completion stage of providing all the necessary facilities and to my knowledge, the tracks will be ready to use within next one week.”

He added, “We have a meeting with the secretary on coming Monday on opening of these tracks. Some decision is expected on starting the facility anytime soon,” he added.

Tracks to test driver’s skills

The new track will check the applicant’s ability to drive, following proper rules. The applicant has to successfully manoeuvre the vehicle on road curves, through an overpass, besides his ability to deal with T- Intersections and intersections controlled by rotary, etc. Further, he/she will be tested for his ability to park the vehicle in the reverse gear.

The current system is ineffective and cumbersome. For the name of driving test, a motor vehicle inspector asks the applicant to drive in open ground. Even this test is often exempted for those with ‘links’ in the department.

Thind said the new system would definitely streamline the whole system in issuing of licences. Thind said the department was also trying for on-the-spot delivery of licences for those who would successfully clear the test.

The current system of issuing the permanent driving license is lengthy. An applicant first gives test at an open ground and then submits the papers at Suvidha Centre, which takes 15-20 days to issue the licence.

“Once the new facility will begin, our office at Suvidha Centre will be shifted there. Recruitment of new staff is under process to ensure that an applicant is issued the driving license on the spot,” added Thind.

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