Another public interest litigation (PIL) petition has been filed in the Madras High Court for a direction to the authorities concerned to strictly implement the safety norms and rules for autos, which are transporting overload of students. In his PIL, S John J Raja Singh of Choolaimedu submitted that due to the “callous attitude” of the police and transport authorities in not strictly enforcing the rules, the lives of travellers, particularly school children, were in danger. He visited several schools and found that rules pertaining to safety of school children while travelling in such vehicles were not being strictly implemented.
The Transport Commissioner had written to all schools and RTOs in the State that these vehicles should not carry school children more than 1.5 times the normal seating capacity. However, a majority of autorickshaws and maxicabs violated the safety norms. The matter was a fit case for urgent judicial intervention, he said.
He prayed the court for a direction to the police, school education and transport departments authorities to implement the safety norms in regard to autos, share autos and maxicabs. Vehicles carrying school children should have boards in front and rear saying “on school duty.”
When the petition came up last week, the second bench of Justices R Banumathi and TS Sivagnanam posted the matter before the first bench led by Acting Chief Justice RK Agrawal.