Cops to Counsel Parents if Minors Caught Driving

,TNN | Sep 12, 2011, 01.30 AM IST

NEW DELHI: Delhi Traffic Police has adopted a four-pronged approach to desist minors from driving vehicles in the city. It has decided to detain the vehicle, call the parents of the child for counselling and issue challans of Rs 1000 for allowing children to drive their vehicle. In addition, it has decided to counsel the school authorities on the measures to be taken if students are found parking and driving vehicles right outside the school premises.

Earlier, 29 minors were found driving vehicles, mostly two-wheelers. "West Delhi had the highest number with 12 minors getting caught while riding bikes and scooters. East Delhi came a close second with 10 violators. Five minors were caught in north Delhi and two others in central Delhi. We detained the vehicles and called their parents," said joint commissioner of police (traffic) Satyendra Garg.

Traffic cops said after frequently finding minors driving vehicles in east, northeast and northwest Delhi, they decided to come down hard on both the parents and school authorities instead of simply issuing challans.

"Youngsters tend to drive rashly and generally do not have a proper licence or training. They want to perform stunts for the adrenaline rush. This endangers the life of both the youngsters and others on road. If the issue is not taken up seriously by involving their guardians and school authorities, precious lives could be lost. Both the parents and school authorities need to be sensitized to the dangers involved in allowing minors to drive vehicles," said a senior traffic police officer.

The fine for allowing an unauthorized person to drive one's car is Rs 1,000. "Instead of just sending a challan, we are calling the parents, so that we can talk to them. This works as an effective deterrent. However, after minors were caught earlier, the word had spread and there were very few cases the next day. But we fear that if checking does not take place regularly, the problem will reappear. We have decided to work together with the parents and school authorities to dissuade children from driving before the legal age," said a senior traffic police officer.

The traffic police are checking such violations after school hours when most of the children can be noticed driving outside school. Earlier, senior traffic cops had met principals and teachers of 45 leading schools of Delhi who are part of the Road Safety Club. The club, which teaches schoolchildren to follow traffic rules and strives to inculcate safe driving habits among young people, was formed with 25 schools last year before Commonwealth Games.

Last year, in separate incidents, two siblings lost their lives in Ashok Vihar and a student in Rohini died while racing with his friends.