The amended Motor Vehicle Act was enforced by the government of India from September this year. Ever since then, various cases of massive fines and penalties have surfaced which led to widespread awareness and anger among the countrymen. Several high profile celebrities and political figures also made it to headlines due to some sort of traffic regulation violation and were fined for the same. Even policemen were given challans when found flouting traffic rules, something which was not common up till now. The latest case that has come to light is of Puducherry, where the CM and Lieutenant Governor got into a war of words over not using a helmet while riding on a two-wheeler.
The verbal tiff between Puducherry Chief Minister V. Narayanasamy and Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi started on Twitter when the latter tweeted a picture of the CM. She alleged him of violating the Motor Vehicles (MV) Act during a campaign rally where he rode on a bike without a helmet. Tagging DGP Puducherry and Nitin Gadkari, she tweeted:
“Brazen violation of MV Act and directions of both Honorable Madras High Court & Supreme Court. Rule of Law prevails. DGP Puducherry, Balaji Srivastava, IPS, issues directions for legal action against the defaulters,”
Brazen violation of MV Act and directions of both Honorable Madras High Court & Supreme Court.
Rule of Law prevails.
DGP Puducherry, Balaji Srivastava, IPS, issues directions for legal action against the defaulters. 🙏 @the_hindu Thanku for evidence as posted. @nitin_gadkari pic.twitter.com/0hp1Amsiq9
— Kiran Bedi (@thekiranbedi) October 20, 2019
To let you know, Puducherry Chief Minister V. Narayanasamy and Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi have had a history of such tiffs over various issues. In February this year, the CM of Puducherry staged a protest in front of LG Kiran Bedi’s residence along with his ministers over an order that mandated helmets for people on two-wheelers.
This time though, V.Narayanswami hit back at Ms. Bedi later in the day in reply of her tweet. His twitter handle shared a photograph of her riding pillion on a scooter without wearing a helmet. This photograph is apparently quite old, a few reports dating it back to August 19, 2017.
— V.Narayanasamy (@VNarayanasami) October 20, 2019
While speaking to India Today TV later, CM V.Narayanasamy reacted to Kiran Bedi’s charges and said
“The LG [Kiran Bedi] should realise that elections are going on. The Election Commission is the proper authority to look into peaceful conduct of elections. Yesterday was the last day of the campaign and there was a bike ride. We were in a bike procession to get support. I went with cadres. If I wear a helmet, who will know if the chief minister is coming or not. I would like to remind the LG that tweeting this info to DGP is against the judgment of Madras HC, where the court has clearly held that social media should not be used for official communication by CMs, LGs and the like,”
On a lighter note, we can say that our leaders have developed a certain comic sense on social media at least and twitter has been a testimony of the same of late. As for the question of not wearing a helmet while riding two-wheelers, the amendments in the Motor Vehicle Act has increased the fine from Rs. 100 to Rs. 1,000. Wearing a helmet is one of the easiest ways of avoiding fatal injuries in case of an accident. While it might be a little uncomfortable for some and cause a little trouble during high-temperature weather, it is a pretty inexpensive way of making sure that your head remains intact even during a fall or collision. Therefore, we urge our readers to invest in a good helmet and wear it every time they go out on their two-wheelers.