OMI Policy Submission | Draft All India Tourist Vehicles Authorisation and Permit Rules, 2020
By Apoorv Kulkarni & Yeshwanth Reddy
The Central Government (Ministry of Road Transport and Highways — MORTH) vide notification dated 1st July 2020 published the draft rules called the “All India Tourist Vehicles Authorisation and Permit Rules, 2020” under the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, and invited public comments and suggestion the same. In this regard, Ola Mobility Institutes submitted its suggestion for the Government’s consideration, as detailed below.
- Suggestion 1: The scope and validity of authorisation or permit as the case may be, could be clarified to include transport of passengers individually or in a group, along with their personal luggage, assistive equipment including but not limited to motorised or non-motorised wheelchairs, walkers, etc., and service animals such as guide dogs to support a disabled passenger.
Rationale: According to Census 2011, there are 104 million Senior Citizens (age 60 or above) and around 27% of households have at least one Senior Citizen member. Similarly, India is home to around 26.8 1 million Persons with Disabilities (PwDs) and 8.31% of households have at least one PwD member. This is likely to be a conservative figure with non-government sources estimating the PwD population to be 5–8 times of the Census 2011 figures. Many of these individuals rely on assistive equipment and service animals for independent living, including for mobility. Therefore, expressed inclusion of assistive equipment and service animals in the aforesaid rule will promote inclusive transportation in India.
2. Suggestion 2, Clause 14: Engaging in discrimination against Persons with Disabilities including but not limited to refusal to transport Persons with Disabilities as passengers, travelling alone or in a group, (with or without non-disabled individuals), refusal to store their assistive equipment, or refusal to transport their service animal could be added as a ground for cancelation or suspension of permit for that particular vehicle.
Rationale: Drivers sometimes refuse to transport disabled passengers and engage in discriminatory behavior which inhibits the ability of Persons with Disabilities to live independently.
Borah H. 2016. “Elderly in India 2016” Page i. Central Statistics Office, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, Government of India. URL: http://mospi.nic.in/sites/default/files/publication_reports/ElderlyinIndia_2016.pdf
Data from Census 2011 as sighted in Nagarajan R. Oct 2014. “15 million elderly Indians live all alone: Census”. Times News Network. URL: https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/15-million-elderly-Indians-live-all-alone-Census/articleshow/43948392.cms
“Measurement of Disability through Census” Page 20. National Experiences: INDIA. URL: https://unstats.un.org/unsd/demographic-social/meetings/2016/bangkok--disability-measurement-and-statistics/Session-6/India.pdf
“Measurement of Disability through Census” Page 42. National Experiences: INDIA. URL: https://unstats.un.org/unsd/demographic-social/meetings/2016/bangkok--disability-measurement-and-statistics/Session-6/India.pdf