Delhi bus depots opened for pollution checks as applications triple
The Delhi government on Wednesday said it has opened its bus depots and terminals for the public to get their vehicles checked for pollution fitness as the average daily applications at testing centres have gone up from 15,000 to 45,000 after the amended Motor Vehicles (MV) Act came into effect on September 1, mandating steep fines for breaking road rules.
Under the new law, driving without a PUC (pollution under control) certificate or with an expired certificate invites a penalty of ₹10,000. Earlier, the fine amount was ₹1,000.
Addressing a press conference, Delhi transport minister Kailash Gahlot said, “Out of
the over 10 million registered vehicles in Delhi, there are
73 lakh vehicles that are running on city roads. Because of the steep hike in traffic offences we are seeing rush at PUC centres. We have taken some measures to decongest these centres. Our bus depots and terminals will be open for the public to conduct pollution checks from 11am to 7pm.”
The minister said the transport department has also increased the server capacity because of which it can now accept around 6,000 applications online in an hour instead of 3,200 applications that were being taken until 1pm on Wednesday.
“In centres that are facing extreme rush, civil defence volunteers will be deployed for crowd management to avert any eventual law and order issues. Ten such centres in locations such as Sarita Vihar, IP Estate, Geeta Colony, Kalkaji extension and Hari Nagar have been identified. Besides, we have also suspended two pollution checking centres for malpractices,” the minister said.
The Delhi government said it will open more pollution checking centres for which it has invited applications.
An advertisement in this respect will be issued on Thursday, an official said.
Besides, all PUC centres have been asked to offer extended services till 10pm.
Delhi has 941 PUC centres and many of them have been witnessing rush of applicants as people are queuing up to get their PUC certificates or get them updated.
Data provided by the Delhi government stated that from September 1 till 12noon on Wednesday, a total of 4.7 lakh PUC certificates have been issued in the national capital.
While vehicle owners are complaining that the government should have acted in advance and not after the amended rules were implemented, enforcement agencies said that the increase in demand for PUC certificates is indicative that the amended Motor Vehicles Act is proving a credible deterrent.