Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said states do not have any discretion in the implementation of the Motor Vehicles Act but the city government was studying how the other states were saying they would "not implement the new law". The Parliament passed the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill, 2019, in July. The new law seeks to tighten traffic regulations and impose steep penalties for violations of traffic rules. Several states like Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana and Gujarat have so far not enforced the penalties of the amended Motor Vehicles Act and Delhi is yet to notify the new rules.
"Several states have been saying that they will not implement new rules, but as per our knowledge...states do not have the discretion. The central government has implemented it across the country," Kejriwal told reporters. The chief minister said there are some categories of offences where states can only decide compounding fee, but in most of the categories, a challan will directly be settled through the court. "However, we are studying how other states are saying that they will not implement it," he also said.
On Saturday, Delhi Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot had said that since heavy penalties were prescribed under the act after a gap of many years, the compounding notification would be issued with wider consultation with traffic police and stakeholders.
Protests were held in some parts of the city by unions of autos and taxis against the enhanced penalties under the amended act. A joint forum, Light Passenger Vehicle Sangh Seva Group, has called for of a symbolic strike to protest against the amended act, on September 9. The forum comprising owners and drivers of auto-rickshaws, minibuses, rural transport and Gramin Sewa autos, and other last-mile connectivity vehicles will participate in the strike, said a leader of the outfit Chandu Chaurasia.