The Supreme Court today issued notice to the central and state governments on a petition seeking a ban on e-rickshaws, which have become popular in the cities.
According to the petition moved by Bibhash Karmakar, the three-wheelers that run on batteries are dangerous and are not authorised by Rule 126 of the Motor Vehicles Rules. Their safety has not been tested by any authorised agencies and there is no insurance, the petition stated.
The petition, heard by a bench headed by Chief Justice R M Lodha, alleged that the manufacturers were selling 800-1,000 watt powered battery-operated vehicles all over the country. "This violates the rule which grants certain exemptions to vehicles below the range of 250 watts and speed up to 25 kmph. But the manufacturing firms are selling 745 watt e-rickshaws with more than one horse power without testing their roadworthiness," the petition stated.
It is further alleged that the manufacturers were smuggling the vehicles without custom clearances like ITCHS Code. All these contributed to road accidents and the government has not taken any urgent action despite the growth of these vehicles, Karmakar argued.
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