NEW DELHI: The Centre has no objection on states bringing down penalties for traffic violation under the new Motor Vehicles Act, Union Minister of Road Transport and Highway Nitin Gadkari said. Gadkari said that states are free to make changes in penalties given the subject is the concurrent list. This comes as several states have objected to implementing the new Motor Vehicles Act in totality, which led penalties for traffic violations increase manifold from September 1. The Gujarat state government has slashed the new fines by up to 90%, citing humanitarian grounds. Tamil Nadu government has also decided to bring down penalties under the new Act. Gadkari said that the idea to levy hefty fines was not to earn revenue but to discipline road users. "You have to understand, we have the highest rate of deaths due to traffic accidents in the world," Gadkari told reporters on the sidelines of a press conference here on Wednesday. He said the government will not charge fines if people are more aware of the traffic rules and road safety. "The penalties are already part of the new (Motor Vehicles) Act, we are not going to change them. Even if the states are earning revenue from these penalties, it will go to their kitty, and come to the Centre," Gadkari said. Gadkari said that people are now more aware about the traffic rules, as against their general disregard for laws in the country.
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