He added that the photographs can be sent to officials of the depots concerned whose contact numbers will be displayed in the buses. “We will first verify the authenticity of the picture and upon confirmation, the fine of Rs 5,000 will be levied on the erring driver. After rewarding the person alerting us, the balance amount from the fine will be deposited with UTC,” Jain said.
Sources said that he corporation’s officials have also been told to use smartphones so that they can receive these images through WhatsApp and other social media platforms, and take immediate action subsequently.
According to Jain, the move was meant not only for curbing accidents but also to instill a sense of confidence among passengers, especially those travelling on hill roads where drivers are expected to drive with utmost concentration. He claimed that the move would “help in substantially bringing down the number of road mishaps involving UTC buses.” Deaths due to road mishaps have constantly been on the rise in Uttarakhand. In 2016, 962 people had died due to accidents in the state while in 2015 and 2014, the number of such fatalities was 913 and 878 respectively.
Welcoming the move, Chiteshwar Singh, a Dehradun resident who travels frequently on UTC buses said that the initiative will “help instill some fear among bus drivers.” “It is a good start. Hopefully, the department will follow it up with stringent action against drivers found flouting other traffic rules so that it sends a strong message that safety will not be compromised at any cost. Also, I think the traffic police should introduce a similar provision for car and two wheeler drivers in the city as well.”