TRYING TO SET A BETTER TRACK RECORD – Pune RTO stops track search at Ghat section

Proposes 400-metre track for fitness tests to be built on its 25-acre plot near Vadki; but, it may be too far for vehicles
The Pune Regional Transport Office (RTO) -rapped last month itself by the Bombay High Court (HC) for issuing fit ness certificates without actually running tests and asked to set up the mandatory 400-metre track to conduct them -has zeroed in on its very own 25-acre patch of land near Vadki village in the Dive Ghat section near Saswad to build the track.A proposal to develop this land into the testing track is been sent to the state transport department by the Pune RTO and work is due to begin after it gets sanctioned. “We were in search of a suitable location to set up this advanced fitness test track for conducting the yearly fitness tests of various transport commercial vehicles like autos, tempos, trucks, buses and cabs. After a detailed survey of different options, we decided to set up the track in Vadki village. This land had been given to the Pune RTO by the state government in 2013. Till now, it has not been used for any purpose,“ said Pune regional transport officer Jeetendra Patil.

He continued, “In our proposal sent to the state government, we have given details about the estimated costs for this advanced track. Also, if possible, a deputy regional transport office can be set up here for issuing licences, permits and so on. It is mandatory for each and every transport vehicle to do this annual fitness test, which is currently taken at the Phulenagar RTO.But the existing track is less than 150 metres long and we need a track of at least 250 metres in length to conduct rigorous fitness tests of brakes and other vehicle functionings.“

A Pune-based advocate, Shrikant Karve, had filed a public interest litigation (PIL) in 2013, drawing attention to the fact that the Pune RTO is not equipped with the mandated 400metre track for testing four-wheelers.The vehicles are required to be driven at a speed of 40 kms per hour, before being asked to push the brakes. Currently, around 200 vehicles come for the fitness test every day to the Pune RTO. After checking the condition of the vehicle and a trial run conducted on the track, a fitness certificate is issued to the vehicle owner.

While speaking about this issue, Baba Shinde, president of Maharashtra Transport Vehicle Owners and Drivers Association, told Pune Mirror, “According to the HC orders, Pune RTO should make the necessary track available for fitness tests. But, it should not be hasty in doing so. It should not be such that only the track is made and the other public facilities are missing. Also, this place in Dive Ghat section will be too far for all the vehicles to go for fitness tests and will add to the traffic chaos in the Ghat section daily. Another more viable option for the fitness track would be RTO’s land in Bavdhan.“

Source : Mirror