A lady from Noida was fined ₹1,000 for driving without a helmet in car. Senseless

A lady from Noida was fined ₹1,000 for driving without a helmet in car.

In a case of mistaken identity, Shailja Chaudhary, a teacher at a government school and resident of Zeta-1, Greater Noida, found herself at the centre of an e-challan controversy. The Gautam Budh Nagar traffic police issued a ₹1,000 fine to Chaudhary for allegedly driving her car without a helmet in Noida‘s Hoshiyarpur locality on June 27. However, Chaudhary claims that she does not own any bike registered in her name, and she was not present in Hoshiyarpur on the mentioned date. This incident has raised concerns about the accuracy of traffic violation records and the need for proper verification processes.

On July 7, while Chaudhary was engrossed in her household chores, she received an unexpected message from the Traffic Police on her mobile phone. Assuming it to be a relative’s violation, she opened the message, only to be astounded by what she found. The e-challan contained a photograph of a bike attached to it, with her car’s registration number listed for driving without a helmet at 8:29 a.m. on June 27 in Greater Noida.

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Expressing her disbelief, Chaudhary categorically denied being in Hoshiarpur on the specified date and emphasised that she does not possess any two-wheelers. She clarified that the only vehicle registered in her name is a Hyundai i20. With conviction, Chaudhary asserted that this was an erroneous mistake made by the traffic police and urged them to quash the wrongful challan.

This incident has raised serious questions about the accuracy and integrity of the traffic violation system of Greater Noida Police. While e-challans are intended to streamline and automate the process of identifying traffic offenders, this case highlights the potential flaws in the system. Mistakes like this can have significant repercussions for innocent individuals who are wrongfully accused and fined.

It is crucial for law enforcement agencies, particularly the traffic police, to ensure the reliability of their records and the accuracy of the information associated with vehicle registration numbers. Such mistakes not only tarnish the reputation of the individuals wrongly charged but also undermine the public’s trust in the traffic enforcement system.

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The incident involving Shailja Chaudhary serves as a wake-up call for authorities to review and strengthen their verification processes. It is essential to implement stringent measures to cross-check information and prevent innocent citizens from facing unwarranted fines and penalties. This could include improved integration between vehicle registration databases and traffic violation records, as well as thorough investigations before issuing challans.

Additionally, the process of issuing e-challans should involve more human oversight to prevent errors from occurring. While automation can enhance efficiency, human intervention is necessary to address situations that require judgement and discretion. Regular audits of the system, along with training programmes for traffic police personnel, can help minimise errors and ensure greater accuracy in issuing challans.

In Shailja Chaudhary’s case, the traffic police must rectify their mistake promptly. The authorities should thoroughly investigate the matter, cross-checking the evidence and conducting interviews to establish the truth. If Chaudhary’s claims are indeed validated, the challan must be immediately withdrawn, and an apology should be issued to her to rectify the inconvenience caused.

This incident serves as a reminder that technological advancements should always be accompanied by robust checks and balances. As more processes become digitised, it becomes increasingly vital to maintain accuracy and accountability. By learning from instances like this, authorities can work towards enhancing the overall efficiency and fairness of the traffic violation system, ensuring that innocent individuals are not wrongfully penalised.

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Chaudhary expressed her reluctance to drive 35 kilometres to the traffic control room office in Noida Sector 14A Greater Noida, as instructed by the challan she received. She believed it was unfair to have to make such a journey for an offence she did not commit. The deputy commissioner of police for traffic, Preeti Yadav, shed light on the situation by explaining the functioning of the integrated traffic management system (ITMS).

According to Greater Noida DCP Yadav, the ITMS automatically reads the registration number of vehicles. However, occasionally, the system may misread the registration number, leading to incorrect challans being issued. In such cases, if the vehicle owner approaches the traffic police and provides evidence of the error, the ticket is cancelled. To rectify the issue, complainants have the option to directly approach the traffic police office or contact them via email. DCP Yadav highlighted that the traffic police receive numerous complaints through email and are actively addressing them.

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Chaudhary’s concern about having to travel a long distance for an offence she did not commit is understandable. However, it is important to follow the instructions on the challan and provide the necessary evidence to the traffic police to rectify any errors. The option to contact the traffic police through email provides a convenient way for individuals to raise their concerns and have their cases reviewed.

In conclusion, while it may be inconvenient for Chaudhary to travel 35 kilometres, she must approach the Greater Noida traffic police and present her case to have the incorrect challan cancelled. The availability of email communication offers a viable alternative for complainants to resolve such issues efficiently.

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