Kottayam: Several anomalies have been pointed out in a recent order of the Motor Vehicles Department (MVD) in Kerala which suggests measures to deal with goods vehicles carrying overload. The order says that rules regarding imposing fines on overloaded vehicles and unloading excess goods have to be followed strictly. In addition, the order asks officials to collect tax for the excess weight of goods carried by the vehicles.
According to legal experts, goods loaded in excess of the weight for which taxes have been paid are termed as ‘overload’. If tax is imposed on the extra weight, the additional goods on the vehicles could no longer be termed illegal and officials can neither impose fines on them nor get them unloaded, the experts said.
In the event of an official charging a fine on such a vehicle which has paid tax on the extra weight or gets the additional goods unloaded, the vehicle owner can approach the court and win the case, the legal experts explained.
Incidentally, an earlier order of the MVD asking officials to take strict action against overloaded vehicles is still in force. This order also suggested cancellation of the driving licence of the person at the wheel of the vehicle.
Curiously, the MVD is currently involved in a contempt of court case for not taking action against overloaded vehicles. In fact, MVD officials are accused of skipping checking of goods vehicles after collecting monthly kickbacks from lorry owners. The legal experts feel that the latest MVD order too will finally benefit goods vehicles plying with overload.