The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MoRTH) has recently shot off a letter to all the state transport departments asking them to take strict action against unauthorized fitment of crash guard and bull bar on motor vehicles.
Many two-wheeler owners get an extra crash guard fitted to the vehicle while four-wheeler owners get a bull bar fitted. While fitment of such extra accessories by itself is not illegal, required permissions have to be taken and prescribed rules have to be followed in case a person wishes to fit such extra accessories. The central government has now asked states to take strict action against any such unauthorized fittings.
What does the Government’s letter say?
The letter from MoRTH to the State Governments says that the fitment of crash guard & bull bar on the vehicles poses serious safety concerns to the pedestrians as well as occupants of the vehicle. The letter goes onto mention that such unauthorized fitting is a violation of Section 52 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 (MV act) and even attracts penalty under Sections 190 & 191 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988.
What is Section 52 of the Motor Vehicles Act?
Section 52 of the MV act imposes certain conditions on the alteration in any motor vehicle. No alteration would be allowed and vehicle structure should not be in variance with what is originally specified by the manufacturer and contained in the registration certificate.
For any alteration such as modification of the engine, different type of fuel or source of energy, fitting of a conversion kit etc. have to be done as per prescribed procedure. Certain exemptions are provided for transport vehicles under the act.
In case any alteration is made without the approval of the registering authority, the same has to be reported within 14 days of making such an alteration with the prescribed fee. Alteration is defined as any variance to the specifications as contained in the Registration Certificate (RC).
What are the Penalties prescribed in the law?
The law prescribes penalty under two different sections of the MV act. Section 190 that talks about driving a vehicle in an unsafe condition which includes violation of standards. Section 191 talks about alteration of vehicle without following the procedure.The penalty is prescribed as Rs 1000 for the first offence and Rs 2000 for every subsequent offence in the state of Telangana.
As a Vehicle owner, what is your job?
You must get in touch with the nearest registering authority in case you have made any alteration compared to what is contained in the registration certificate of your vehicle, especially addition of crash guards & bull bars. One can search for the details of the registering authority (as given in the RC) from the central VAHAN website.
Prescribed fee has to be paid for entering the alteration in the registration certificate as per the provisions of the relevant motor vehicle rules.