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Now pay all traffic fines only digitally in Chennai

The city police had drawn flaks from social activists after city-based cabbie Manikandan killed himself over a tiff with the traffic police.

In a major move to revamp its image dented by recent tussles between traffic police and motorists and videos circulated on social media, the Greater Chennai Traffic Police decided to do away with spot fine from Thursday.

Greater Chennai Police Commissioner A.K. Viswanathan inaugurated the new system at an event held in police commissioner office on Thursday. He also handed over the newly updated handheld devices to traffic police personnel.

Meanwhile, A. Arun, Additional Commissioner (Traffic),  said that the new system would encourage police–public relations. “Public has been misunderstanding the spot fine collected by the traffic police as bribe.

Also, arguments and fights have arisen due to the compelling of spot fine and detention,” Arun told mediapersons.

The traffic police coercion for spot fine had led to arguments and subsequent attacks in recent times.

The city police had drawn flaks from social activists after city-based cabbie Manikandan killed himself over a tiff with the traffic police.

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Coercion for spot fine and detention of his vehicle led to the extreme step. The city traffic police, apart from doing away with the spot fine, also have introduced online and app-based payment modes. “Public can pay the fine by using credit or debit cards, SBI online banking, Paytm app. The fines could be paid at e-seva centres and post offices,” Arun said.

While explaining the payment modes, the additional commissioner also issued a stern warning to traffic police and said actions would be initiated on those who collect money from traffic violators. “We have removed the spot fine facility in handheld e-challan devices. Collecting money from violators is a crime hereafter,” he added.

Although the traffic violators may get a relief from paying the fine at the spot, they have to pay the fine within 48 hours from the generation of e-challan by the traffic police during the violation.

“If anyone fails to pay the fine within 48 hours, we will send court summons to them. As all the devices are interlinked, we will monitor the payment in real-time,” Arun said.

Explaining about Chennai traffic police commitment in controlling accidents, Arun said that the police show strictness in following rules to curb accidents.

“In 2017, 1374 fatal accidents have happened in the city. Of the total fatal accidents, nearly 60 per cent involved two-wheelers. Our strictness has been projected wrongly and to avoid such misunderstanding, the new system is brought into place,” he added.

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