Mangaluru, July 12, 2019: The District School Vehicle Operators’ Association went off roads on July 11, Thursday, indefinitely against the alleged harassment by the police who have been booking cases against them.
The association claimed that they will suspend the operations indefinitely, some operators have asked parents to make arrangements for their children till July 13. Meanwhile the buses/vehicles being operated by the school managements will ply as usual. On directions from Karnataka High Court, the city police stared taking strict action private school van operators since June end for overloading their vehicles with excess number of children.
The operators association has accused the police of booking only commercial vehicles carrying schoolchildren and have sought the intervention of district in charge Minister Khader and Mangaluru City South MLA Vedavyas Kamath. The association had previously met city Police Commissioner Sandeep Patil.
President of the association Mohan Kumar Attavar said that the drivers are being booked for carrying more children when the motor vehicle rules permit them to carry 1.5 times the seating capacity of the vehicle. Hefty fine by the police was a severe punishment for operators.
The operators will hold a protest in front of the DK DC’s office Mangaluru July 12, Friday, stated the association in a press release.
Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime and Traffic) Laxmi Ganesh and Assistant Commissioner of Police (Traffic) M. Manjunath Shetty held separate meetings with the members of the association.
Speaking of the situation, the city Police Commissioner Sandeep Patil said that according to the law, such vehicles cannot carry excess schoolchildren. Also, the High Court of Karnataka has given specific direction that cases should be booked against vehicles carrying excess children, and is monitoring the action taken.
The matter has have been brought to the notice of the association and they have been asked to follow the law in the interest of the safety of schoolchildren and have been asked to abide by the directions of the High Court. The commissioner has also asked the association to call off the strike.