Truckers put brakes on speed governors
Speed governors installed in commercial vehicles to check over-speeding hardly function for even a day after the vehicle is passed and issued a certificate by the Motor Vehicle Inspector (MVI) of the transport department for its commercial use in Moga district.
The mandatory annual passing of commercial vehicles is also done without any physical verification by the transport department.
An insider in the department said that when a person files an application to get his vehicles passed, a ‘private clerk’ hired by the department who gets salary from the MVI’s personal pocket, completes the paper work while the MVI ‘blindly’ puts his signatures on it.
All these papers are prepared and put up at the MVI office by numerous agents thriving in Moga city, indicating corruption in the system.Nikku Singh, a truck driver, told The Tribune that speed governors are installed in the vehicles but they normally cut the connection which is attached to the diesel pipe. Even if any officer of the transport department physical checks the vehicle, he or she can hardly spot the ‘technical loophole’, he said.
Ranjit Singh, another truck driver, said that speed governors could be easily removed or tampered with.“We just need to show the speed governor to the MVI during the first passing of the vehicle for its commercial use. In the subsequent years, the files are moved through the agents who manage everything,” he said.
Another truck driver said that most of the commercial vehicle owners and drivers tamper with the speed governors by cutting its connection to the fuel pump, thereby rendering it non-functional.
The reduced supply of fuel to the fuel pump limits the speed of the vehicle, but once the connection of the speed governor to the fuel pump is snapped, the vehicle can be run at a high speed as per the capacity of its engine.
A majority of trucks and canters parked at the truck and canter unions in Moga reportedly do not have a functional speed governor system as their owners/drivers have disconnected the system.
The Punjab and Haryana High Court had directed the state government to install speed governors in all commercial vehicles registered in Punjab in the wake of increasing road deaths in accidents, but the state government has ‘totally’ failed to comply with the court orders.
An official of the district administration said that speed governors had been installed in more than 4,000 commercial vehicles in Moga district in the past three years, but most of those are practically non-functional.