Mandatory Helmet Law: Extended a day with Enforcement from Monday Mid-night

Written by  Published by:Pakistan Views Tuesday, 09 June 2015 10:53

KARACHI: The helmet-compulsory drive that was due to kick off from Monday, June 8, could not unfortunately get the response officials were hoping for.

According to a traffic police official, Muhammad Idrees, who is reader to the Traffic DIG Amir Ahmed Shaikh, the impending crackdown will start at midnight on Monday. “We have granted one more day so people can buy the safety device,” he said. On Monday, traffic police officials were seen warning the motorcyclists without helmets about the campaign.

Meanwhile, the section officer of the Defence Chowki, Fehmida Abbasi, said they already issued around 100 challans to motorcyclists without helmets. The officer was of the opinion that the traffic police will not be able to make every motorcyclist or pillion rider wear the helmet at once. “It will take time,” she said, adding that the effect of the campaign, which has been run through the media, could already be seen on the roads.

“One can see at least the motorcyclist, if not the pillion rider, wearing the helmet,” she pointed out. “Today, at least one in six motorcyclists is wearing the safety gear.” Abbasi said they had received orders from the headquarters to initiate the drive from Tuesday. Albeit, for the last two days, Abbasi has been warning female pillion motorcyclists to buy helmets, only to be laughed back. “They complain it won’t be possible for them to wear helmets and some think I am cracking jokes with them,” she said.

The warning

A day before the drive kicks off, the traffic police officials were stopping motorcyclists and issuing them warnings. A few of the violators were, however, fined Rs150 for not wearing the helmets.

At Defence Morr, 15-year-old Mustafa was stopped by traffic police constable, Mushtaq Ahmed. Ahmed asked for Mustafa’s licence, which he did not have. “Don’t you know helmets have been made compulsory for motorcyclists as well as the co-riders?” asked Ahmed. Mustufa and his mother, who was sitting behind him, stared at him blankly, or at least pretended to have no idea about the campaign.

Another young motorcyclist, 18-year-old Komail, was passing Defence Morr, when Ahmed stopped him. Komail said that he knew about the helmet-compulsory drive, but couldn’t get time to buy the safety gear. He promised, however, to buy the helmet as soon as possible.

Awareness sessions

Idrees assured that the campaign will start in full swing today (Tuesday). He was, however, reluctant to force women to wear the safety gear. “There is already a petition against the drive in the Sindh High Court,” he said. “Though we have not received any notice, we are careful in this regard and won’t be very strict with females for the time being.”

According to Idrees, an awareness seminar will be held at Arts Council this week, to educate people about the importance of helmets. “We will distribute around 500 free helmets to women at the session,” he revealed adding that such awareness camps would be established in all the districts of Karachi in the current week.

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