Pune: If the sight of a minor boy or girl displaying their driving skills on two-wheeler through chock-a-bloc traffic reminds you of the stunts from a James Bond movie, then you are not alone.
Though there has been a significant drop in the number of persons below 18 years of age, applying for learner’s license, it failed to curb the number of minors fearlessly riding a two-wheeler on the streets.
Interestingly, this is happening even after the State government took adequate efforts to dissuade minors from driving two-wheelers. Last year, the State government made it mandatory to mention the registration number of 50 CC vehicles along with the application for learner’s licence. As soon as this notification was introduced, the number of applications for learner’s licence dipped.
According to the information provided by the Regional Transport Office (RTO), in 2017-18, the number of issued learner’s licence has been dropped by 26.56 per cent from previous year i.e. 2016-17. The data shows that in 2016-17, RTO had issued 1,85,528 learner’s licences and this year (2017-18), RTO has issued only 1,36,259 licences for learners. In fact, the number of the permanent driving licences has increased by 12.57 per cent from the previous year. In 2017-18, RTO has issued 81,381 permanent licences and in 2016-17, it had issued 72,291 licences.
“This year, the number of applications for learner’s licence dropped from the previous year. The reason behind is only we have added a column which means that if the applicants are in between 16-18 years of age, they have to mention that they have a scooter with 50 CC. The form will be filled up by their parents. Most of the applicants don’t have 50 CC vehicles and we had not accepted any application of the learner’s licence,” BI Ajri, Regional Transport Officer, Pune told Sakal Times.
“Many underage (below 18) two-wheeler riders ride bikes, scooters on city roads without driving licence and their number has been increasing which is also a worrying situation. We have asked the Pune traffic department to take action against such riders,” he said.
Recently, a Sangola court had imposed three-month rigorous impressment and Rs 13,000 fine on 11 parents, who allowed their children (under 18) to ride two-wheelers.
Ajri has raised the concern about the minors riding two-wheelers which is not a good sign of a developing society.
However, the Pune traffic department has also provided data which shows that in three months from January to March this year, 129 cases have been registered and fine of Rs 64,500 has been collected from them. Last year from January to December, the Pune traffic police had taken action against 610 two-wheeler riders below 18 years and collected fine Rs 3,05,000 from them.
“Parents are allowing their children to ride two-wheelers. Our staff is taking action if they find any minor driving on main roads. But the problem is, minors are driving in the bylanes of their societies,” said Vivekanand Wakhare, Inspector Planning, Traffic Police.
Issued licences by RTO
Type of Licence 2016-17 2017-18 Growth
Learner’s Licence 18,5528 136259 -26.56 pc
Permanent Licence 72,291 81,381 +1,257 pc
Year Cases Fine Collection (in Rs)
January-March 2018 129 1,38,840
January-December 2017 610 3,05,000