The Motor Vehicles Act of 1988 lists a number of rules or laws that must be followed by all vehicle owners/drivers. However, there are more than a handful of people that choose to bypass these laws and do as they please while driving or riding their vehicles. Section 129 of the Motor Vehicles Act is targeted at two-wheeler drivers and states that driving/riding a two-wheeler without wearing a helmet is considered a traffic violation and is an illegal offence in the country. The punishment for anyone caught without a helmet while driving/riding a two-wheeler can go up to Rs. 1,000 along with the suspension or seizing of the driving licence. In some severe cases, the driver can be imprisoned for up to three months.
What is the fine for not wearing a helmet while driving a two-wheeler today?
When the Motor Vehicles Act was first prepared, the fine for driving a two-wheeler without wearing a helmet was no higher than Rs. 100. With this amount in mind, offenders didn’t mind if they were caught and would often just pay the fine and continue breaking the law. However, when the Motor Vehicles Act was amended in September 2019, the fine was increased to Rs. 1,000. Along with the fine, some states either seize or suspend the driving licence of the driver, and the penalty can even find the driver in prison for about three months. The latest amendment of the Section 129 rule also states that a legal helmet must be of a thickness of about 20-25 mm and should have high-quality foam on the inside. There should also be an ISI certification on the helmet in accordance with the Bureau of Standards.
What is the process if you are caught without helmet for driving?
If you have never been caught or unfortunately forgot to wear a helmet, this is the process of a police officer when they catch you driving without a helmet:
- They will ask you to stop the vehicle on the side of the road.
- If they feel like you might flee, the police will seize the vehicle’s keys until the procedure is complete.
- One of the first things the police will ask for is documentation to prove that you are legally driving the vehicle. A driving licence, motorcycle papers, insurance, and other such documents are requested to ensure that no other offence is being committed.
- Once the verification is done, the police will prepare a Challan in the name of the offender along with the fine amount according to the amended Motor Vehicles Act of 2019.
- If the police officer is using updated technology, he will prepare an e-Challan that will be forwarded to your registered mobile number.
- Once the Challan is handed over or sent to your mobile phone, you can make the payment online or offline.
For offline: In case you want to pay the challan amount offline, you need to visit the nearest police station. Over there, you need to confirm the amount you need to pay to clear the fine. Do remember to collect the receipt after payment of the fine.
For online: In case you wish to pay the fine online, the following steps need to be followed-
- Visit the website of the State’s Transport Department.
- Locate the section for the payment of e-challan. Once found, click on the required link for traffic challan payment.
- Next, enter your vehicle’s registration number or challan number. Y
- After that, enter the captcha code to verify that you aren’t a robot.
- Make the required payment through your credit or debit card. You can also use PayTM.
- Next, once the payment has been processed, you’ll receive a confirmation through an e-receipt.
Tips to refrain from getting fined without wearing helmet for driving
When you choose to drive a vehicle, it is your duty to adhere to the rules and laws of the state/country. By following the rules, not only will you save yourself from fines and penalties, but you will also keep people around you safe. If you want to avoid getting a Challan while driving your two-wheeler, here are some helpful tips:
- For starters, don’t forget to wear a legal helmet when you choose to drive your vehicle.
- Make sure the helmet you have is ISI certified and is at least 20-25 mm thick with high-quality foam padding.
- Always have an extra helmet in case you find yourself picking up a pillion rider.
- If your vehicle doesn’t have enough space to store a helmet, buy a helmet lock and keep it on your vehicle at all times.
- Buy a helmet that fits properly. If it is tight, it can cause you to hyperventilate easily and if it is oversized, it will not keep you safe in case of an accident.
- Always remember to replace your helmet as soon as you find it deteriorating. If the padding is loose or the straps are broken, you need to replace the helmet immediately.
Helmet Challan Price in the Different States
As mentioned earlier, the amended Motor Vehicles Act updated the fine for not wearing a helmet while driving a two-wheeler from Rs. 100 to Rs. 1,000 in September 2019. However, some states have taken the penalty structure into their own hands and have come up with fines and penalties of their own. Here are the fine amounts for different states in India for not wearing a helmet while driving a two-wheeler:
|Delhi||Rs. 1,000 and/or Licence Disqualification for 3 Months|
|Maharashtra||Rs. 1,000 and/or Licence Disqualification for 3 Months|
|Uttar Pradesh||Rs. 1,000|
|Karnataka||Rs. 1,000 and/or Licence Disqualification for 3 Months|
|Punjab||Rs. 1,000 and/or Licence Disqualification for 3 Months|
|Andhra Pradesh||Rs. 1,000 and/or Licence Disqualification for 3 Months|