BENGALURU: Some traffic policemen in the city are duping gullible two-wheeler riders by collecting fine for non-existent rules. They insist that the letters ‘IND’ be marked on vehicle number plates and those who don’t have it have to cough up a fine of Rs 100 to Rs 200. A senior traffic police officer, however, told Express that no such rule exists even as motorists continue to get taken for a ride.
Last Saturday, a rider Prabhu was stopped by policemen on Sarjapur Road near the Carmelaram bus stand. “I was told the letters IND are compulsory on number plates. Since my vehicle did not have it, I had to pay a fine of Rs 100,” he told Express. A surprised Prabhu told the traffic constable that he had never heard of such a rule. “He told me it was made mandatory three months ago. Many others too were getting booked at the spot, so I paid up,” he said.
The constable did not provide any receipt and asked him to leave after the payment. Prabhu saw policemen across the road also stopping riders. “I pointed out to the cop that a similar exercise was happening across the street and asked for a receipt. I said I might get penalised again when I come by the same road.” The cop told Prabhu not to worry. “Just tell them you have already paid us the money,” Prabhu quoted him as saying.
A quick glance at social media platforms reveals this is not an isolated case. Many have been getting penalised over the issue. A tweet by Minal on October 25 read: “Hello, yesterday a police stopped me for some freaky reason. He mentioned I don’t have IND on my number plate, pay Rs 200.”
Sankar who uses the handle @digiteck posed this query: “Is it mandatory to use ‘IND’ marked number plate on vehicles? We came to know that it is illegal to use IND Number plates, But Bangalore City Traffic police are charging fine saying we have to install IND number plate.” This query has been directed to the Twitter handle of the Bangalore City Traffic Police by Charlie Mathew: “What is the number plate standard? Is it IND?”