Have you ever been caught by a traffic cop for violating traffic rules? Many of us lose a lot of money paying fines for violating simple traffic rules. Actually, we can save all that money by simply following the rules.
Here are the most basic of those rules:
- If you are driving a car, wear your seatbelt.
- If you are riding your two-wheeler, wear your helmet. Make sure that the pillion rider is also wearing a helmet.
- Don’t park your vehicle on the road or in front of a bus stand or on the footpath. Park it well off the road.
If you want to be on the safest side, find a Mangaluru City Corporation (MCC) pay park. You have to pay them a fee depending on your vehicle and how long you want to park your vehicle there. For example, if you are parking a car for one hour, you have to pay Rs. 10. You can rest assured that you won’t find a tire lock on your vehicle when you return to it. You will save the Rs. 200 you will have to pay as fine to get the tire lock off your car.
- Don’t mix drinking with driving.
- Carry the original copies of your registration card, insurance certificate, Pollution under Control (PUC) certificate, tax card, and driving license. If you are driving a transport vehicle, you have to carry your permit and fitness certificate as well.
- If you dislike the idea of carrying the original copies of your registration card, insurance certificate, tax card, and driving license, you can produce these documents at the Regional Transport Office (RTO) and obtain a Master Pass. This Master Pass proves that you have all the above-mentioned documents. You can then keep your original documents at home and carry the Master Pass whenever you drive.
- Even if you have a Master Pass, you have to carry a PUC. It is illegal to drive any vehicle without the PUC.
Since the Mangaluru Traffic Police do not have a website, I had to rely heavily on the Bengaluru City Traffic Police website. They have a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) questions section, which gives a lot of information.
1. You have the right to request a receipt.
You see, there is no chance of a cop overcharging you if you insist on a receipt.
Interestingly, no constable or head constable can accept spot fines. Only three officers can accept spot fines and issue receipts. They are the assistant sub-inspector, police inspector, and police sub-inspector.
So how are you going to identify them? It’s easy. You just have to count the stars on their uniforms. The assistant sub-inspector has one star, the police sub-inspector has two, and the police inspector has three.
2. No penalties for outstation vehicles.
The police are not authorized to penalize drivers of vehicles bearing outstation registration plates.
3. The traffic police cannot fine you for not having a PUC.
Of course, it is not legal to drive a vehicle without a PUC. But the police have nothing to do with checking PUCs as it is the responsibility of the RTO.
4. You can refuse to pay the spot fine.
You have the right to refuse to pay the spot fine, but you have to surrender your driving license. When you do so, you will receive an acknowledgment. You will then be given a week’s time to visit the nearest police station, pay the fine, and get back your driving license. If you fail to do so, you will be summoned by the court.
If you don’t want to pay the spot fine and don’t have a license with you, you will have to leave your vehicle with the police.
So what do should you do if a traffic cop stops you?
1 Avoid arguing with the cop.
As far as possible, avoid arguing with the traffic cops. If you learn the traffic rules and stick to them, no traffic cop will ever stop you. If you obey the rules, you will make life easier not only for the traffic police but also for you. If it is quite clear that you have violated a rule, simply pay the fine, accept your receipt, and drive away.
2. Don’t run away.
If a traffic cop has stopped you, you might as well face the music. After all, it doesn’t take long. You only have to pay the fine and listen to a lecture. Don’t ever make the mistake of speeding away. You might end up running over someone or injuring them.
3. Download Fine Meter
Fine Meter is a simple app for Android. You will find it in the Google Play Store. You can download and install it on your mobile free of charge. This app is a storehouse of information about traffic rules and penalties for traffic offenses. You can use it to calculate the exact amount of fine you have to pay for a traffic offense.
Here are a few more things you can do:
- The Mangaluru Traffic Police have a Facebook page. Click here to like it.
- The Mangaluru City Police have a website. Do bookmark it. It is one of the most useful websites for Mangaloreans.
- The Dakshina Kannada District Police also have a blog. You can access it here.