The Vehicle Scrappage Policy was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month. It was formulated to phase out unfit and polluting vehicles in an environment-friendly manner. As part of this new policy, a vehicle should be scrapped after the date of expiry, and two-wheeler/ four-wheelers owners will be given a discount of 5 to 10 percent for purchasing a new vehicle. While the rest of the country is planning to adopt this policy in a phased manner, here is what the Vizag Road Transport officials opine about scrap vehicles in the district.
As per statistics, there are 9.65 lakh two-wheelers, 3.18 lakh four-wheelers, and 4,325 jeeps in Visakhapatnam. About 45 percent of the vehicles in the city are found to be 10 to15 years old and not in a good condition to run. This causes severe serious pollution to the environment. Many vehicles are running on the roads even without the regular pollution checks.
According to the Road Transport Authority (RTA) officials, in Vizag, the main aim of the Vehicle Scrappage Policy is to scrap old vehicles so as to reduce pollution in the city. Furthermore, recycled materials of the vehicle such as iron and copper can be reused. As per the policy, after the expiry of the vehicles, a competency test will be conducted and if the condition is good, a certificate will be issued accordingly. Otherwise, the vehicles will be considered as scrap.
According to the Motor Vehicle Act, the lifespan of personal vehicles is 15 years and the lifespan of commercial vehicles is up to 10 years. After this, many vehicles are undergoing tests and going for re-registration. With this, personal vehicles can be operated for up to 20 years and commercial vehicles for up to 15 years.
According to the Deputy Transport Commissioner (DTC), GC Rajaratnam, the new guidelines regarding the Vehicle Scrappage Policy are yet to come. Meanwhile, preparations are on to set up centers, at various places in the city, to dump scrap vehicles. Under this policy, old vehicles should be compulsorily given for scrap before purchasing a new vehicle with a discount. A certificate will be issued to those who have handed over their old vehicles. These people will then be given a chance to skip the registration fee, at the time of purchase of the new one, and also a discount on road tax payment.