Kerala govt mulls relaxation to carry child in addition to pillion rider

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Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala government is considering exempting fines imposed on motorcyclist for carrying a child in addition to the pillion rider, even though it violates the Central Motor Vehicles Act. The Motor Vehicle Department is likely to request relaxation in the laws, which considers children above the age of 4 years as full passengers.

According to the Central Motor Vehicles Act, a fine can be imposed for carrying a child above 4 years of age, who is considered as a third passenger while travelling with parents on a motorcycle. The government has decided to strictly implement the law when the Artificial Intelligence- enabled surveillance cameras became functional in the state. However, the state government has mulled to seek relaxation in view of the protests raised against the decision to impose fines on the violators.

Minister for Transport Antony Raju said that the union government had amended the law in such a way that it is not possible for children to travel on two-wheelers along with their father and mother. The minister asserted that the state government has no authority to launch an amendment or concession in this.

Earlier, the motorcyclists who carry children were not fined during the direct inspection under the MVD in the state. This relaxation could be continued if the state government gives an informal nod as the traffic violations spotted by the AI cameras are verified and fined by the officials.

According to the amendment of Section 138 (7) of the Motor Vehicles Act, a child between 9 months and four years of age can travel on a motorcycle with parents by attaching the child with a safety harness. It restricts speed of such motorcycles to 40 kmph.

For children below four years, safety harness shall be used for attaching the child to the driver of the motorcycle. The law has also made crash helmets mandatory for kids.

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