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Karnataka High Court directs BBMP to auction abandoned vehicles parked on footpaths of Bengaluru

The Karnataka High Court grants permission for BBMP and City Police to auction abandoned vehicles to clear encroachments and ease traffic in Bengaluru. Vehicles over 15 years old are to be auctioned within 30 days; strict measures are outlined for removal and fines. BBMP plans designated zones for street vendors.

Karnataka High Court directs BBMP to auction abandoned vehicles parked on footpaths of Bengaluru vkp
First Published Feb 9, 2024, 10:36 AM IST

To clear encroachments and ease traffic congestion on the streets of Bengaluru, the Karnataka High Court has granted permission to the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) and the City Police Department to auction off vehicles left abandoned on roads and footpaths for an extended period. The decision came following a public interest petition filed by resident Prashantha Rao, aimed at reclaiming footpaths in Thyagarajanagar from unauthorized vehicle parking.

A division bench headed by Chief Justice PS Dinesh Kumar passed the order, modifying the Magistrate's Court's previous directive. The High Court now mandates that vehicles older than 15 years must be auctioned within 30 days of completing all legal formalities. Similarly, vehicles aged 1 to 5 years should be disposed of within three months, while those aged 5 to 15 years within two months through auction.

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State Advocate General (AG) K. Sasikiran submitted affidavits from Joint Commissioner of City Traffic Police Division Anucheth and BBMP Chief Commissioner Tushar Girinath, outlining steps to address encroachments and dispose of abandoned vehicles. According to Shashikiran, a dedicated team has been formed to identify vehicles parked on roads and footpaths for more than 15 days. 

These vehicles will be tagged for removal, and if not relocated, will be towed to a designated collection point. Subsequently, the Regional Transport Office (RTO) will be contacted to obtain information about the vehicle owners and any pending cases against them.

Moreover, owners of the impounded vehicles will be issued fines, with non-payment resulting in the vehicle's auction or sale with the Magistrate Court's permission. The AG proposed reducing the auction period from six months to 15 days to expedite the process.

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Additionally, the BBMP plans to designate specific business zones across the city to accommodate street vendors without disrupting pedestrian traffic. BBMP Chief Commissioner Tushar Girinath emphasized the need for strict monitoring of street vendors to ensure public convenience.

However, the statistics revealed a significant increase in cases registered against vehicles parked on roads and footpaths over the past few years. In 2021, 74,851 cases were recorded, which surged to 1,53,983 in 2022. Similarly, cases against vehicles driving on footpaths witnessed a rise from 8,422 in 2021 to 18,144 in 2022.

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