The special committee appointed to revise the seven controversial traffic offence fines expects to meet on 9 January, Transport Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said on Thursday.
The Minister said that the committee will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of having a higher traffic fine by considering the opinions expressed by civil society.
He added that the committee will pay attention to the opinions of all related associations including the bus owners’ association, the bus drivers’ association, the three-wheeler drivers’ association and other drivers’ associations. De Silva also said that the committee hopes to collect ideas from the public on the increment of traffic fines.
He further said that the committee will submit its final recommendations to the Cabinet as soon as possible.
Last November, fines for seven traffic offences were increased to Rs. 25,000, following discussions between the Finance Ministry, the Transport Ministry and relevant authorities.
Accordingly, drunk driving, driving without vehicle insurance, driving without valid license, overtaking from the left side, speeding, driving illegally at a railway crossing and allowing someone to drive without a valid license were deemed offences that warrant a fine of Rs. 25,000.
However, the Government faced heavy resistance from the bus owners’ association as well as other associations. Following several rounds of discussion with these associations, the Finance Ministry promised to make amendments to the fines where possible.
It was in the wake of this development that a special committee was appointed to revise the hike. (CG)