Can ‘Caste and Religious Stickers’ be placed on vehicles?

  • Recent challans issued by the Noida and Ghaziabad Police for displaying ‘caste and religious stickers’ on vehicles have sparked debate about the validity of such stickers.
  • This action, which is part of a particular drive, raises concerns about the junction of automobile regulations, social norms, and legal constraints.

Exploring the Legal Framework for Displaying Caste on Vehicles

  • Stickers with caste and religious symbols: The legality of these stickers is determined by the Motor Vehicle Act and Motor Vehicle Rules.
  • State Orders: Several state governments, like Uttar Pradesh, have issued orders prohibiting the affixing of caste and religious labels on vehicles, even on the body of the vehicle.
  • Stickers on the registration number plate are strictly prohibited under the Motor Vehicle Rules.

Stickers that Challenge Law Enforcement

  • Penalties for installing Such Stickers on Vehicles: The penalty for installing such stickers on vehicles is Rs 1,000, but it climbs to Rs 5,000 if the sticker is placed on the registration number plate.
  • Future Initiatives: The authorities have stated that they intend to conduct such efforts in the future.

Specifications for Number Plates and Violations

  • Number Plate Standards: According to the Motor Vehicle Rules, the number plate shall be a solid unit composed of 1.0 mm metal with the letters “IND” in blue on the extreme left centre.
  • Penalties for Violations: Penalties for non-compliant number plates are outlined in Section 192 of the MV Act, including fines of up to Rs 5,000 for the first offence and potential imprisonment and fines for consecutive offences.
  • 2019 Amendment: Following the 2019 MV Act amendment, fines for infractions were increased to a maximum of Rs 2,000.

Order Disobedience and Legal Consequences

  • In the instance of stickers on the body of vehicles, police are issuing challans under Section 179 of the Motor Vehicles Act 1988.
  • Section 179 Specifics: Section 179 is concerned with “disobedience of orders, obstruction, and refusal of information.” According to the clause, violators can be fined up to Rs 500.
  • The fines for such offences have been enhanced to a maximum of Rs 2,000 as a result of the 2019 MV Act revision.
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