Pune RTO seizes 17 school vehicles and 5 buses.

PUNE: With schools reopening this academic year, witnessing overcrowded school buses and vans on the roadways has become the norm. However, the Pune Regional Transport Office (RTO) is now cracking down hard on school transport vehicles that have not registered with the RTO or have not had their fitness certificate procedure completed by the RTO. The RTO seized and penalised 17 school vehicles and 5 school buses between June 1 and June 28, and issued notice on their owners.

The Pune RTO claimed earlier this month that just half of the 6,200 registered school transportation vehicles had registered and had their Fitness Certificate (FC)procedure completed by the RTO.

We have organised four squads of RTO inspectors who monitor school buses and vans travelling on roadways on a regular basis, Students are being transported by these vehicles as schools begin, and under this checking drive, we primarily check the vehicles transport passing, fitness certificate, permit and taxes, condition, and, most importantly, whether or not the 'overload' factor of students is in accordance with the rules. As a result, we took action against 17 school vehicles and 5 school buses, said Sanjay Sasane, deputy regional transport officer.

All school transportation vehicles were out of service during the latter two years of the Covid-19 epidemic, and the Pune RTO registered 6,200 cars in the Pune division in 2019. Since the start of the academic year, when schools reopened physically, about 3,000 school vans and buses have registered with the RTO and had their fitness certificate procedures completed.

We have previously appealed to and conveyed to all school transportation vehicle owners to complete their fitness certificate procedure before transporting pupils. Still, a big number of cars have not received their fitness certificate, therefore our inspectors have gone on a drive to check these vehicles around the city, said Sasane.

Rajesh Kamble, owner of four school vans, commented on the RTO's action against unlicensed school vehicles, saying, "For the previous two years owing to Covid limitations, our cars were not functioning, thus there was no business. While we had to complete their whole RTO-related documentation before schools started, the procedure for certain cars is still ongoing. So our desire is for additional time to finish the registration and permission procedure."

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