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  • Raghav Sand

Motor Vehicle Act’s new provisions applicable from 1st October 2020

Passage of law

The Motor Vehicle Act in India was amended in 2019. “Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MoRTH) has recently issued notifications regarding various amendments in Central Motor Vehicle Rules 1989 requiring the implementation of enforcement, Maintenance of Vehicular Documents and E-Challans through portal w.e.f 1.10.2020 for better monitoring and enforcement of MV Rules,” MoRTH said in a statement.

Rationale for amendments

The government has been pushing for digitization and easing the harassment of motorists. Physical copy of Registration Certificate (RC), Driving License (DL), Pollution Under Control Certificate (PUC), and insurance certificate is not required to be carried under the new rules. Further upon demanding or inspecting any documents, the date and time stamp of inspection and identity of the police officer in uniform or any other officer authorized by the State Government, shall be recorded on the Portal. This would help in unnecessary re-checking or inspection of vehicles and further would remove harassment to the drivers.

Mobile app for vehicle documents

MoRTH has prescribed cloud based applications like mParivahan and DigiLocker for maintenance of vehicle documents. After installing the mParivahan application on a smartphone, one can retrieve records after following instructions on the screen.

For DL, one has to input the DL number and subsequently validate it with the date of birth as per record. When the DL number and date of birth match, a QR code will get generated and all the information present on DL will get listed on the smartphone application. The application will have the photograph, blood group, validity of license, category of vehicle (Light Motor Vehicle / Motorcycle etc.); it will also have record of any pending fines.

Multiple users can have RC details of vehicle on their app and it will be valid for each user. Vehicles used by members of a family or among friends will make good use of this feature. As soon as the details of RC are entered on the application, it will be validated by chassis number and engine number. Along with the details of the vehicle, validity of insurance and PUC will be updated on the mobile application, simultaneously.

Navigation devices

It has been provided that the use of handheld communications devices while driving shall solely be used for route navigation in such a manner that shall not disturb the concentration of the driver while driving.

Good Samaritan

A Good Samaritan is one who voluntarily renders aid to another in distress although under no duty to do so. A sizeable number of lives are lost from road accidents, when the victim does not make it to the nearest hospital in time. Eye-witnesses and bystanders hesitate to come forward for help in order to avoid unwarranted procedures involving law enforcement agencies and hospitals. In order to encourage people to come forward in an emergency, MoRTH has notified addition to Motor Vehicle Act.

  1. A Good Samaritan who has informed the police of any accident involving a motor vehicle, or who has transported a victim of an accident involving a motor vehicle to the hospital, shall not be subjected to any further requirements by the police or the hospital, and shall be permitted to leave immediately;

  2. A Good Samaritan shall be treated respectfully without any discrimination on the grounds of religion, nationality, caste or sex;

  3. No police officer or any other person, shall compel a Good Samaritan to disclose his name, identity, address or any such other personal details. The Good Samaritan may voluntarily choose to disclose his name, address, and name of the injured person (if known) to the police officer but he / she may not be compelled to become a witness in the case; and

  4. A Good Samaritan does not have to bear any medical expenses towards the treatment of an injured person or victim.

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