Towing of vehicles in Bengaluru temporarily halted

Home Minister Araga Jnanendra said that a new and simplified towing system will be announced in 15 days.
Two wheelers being towed by a tow truck
Two wheelers being towed by a tow truck
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Towing of vehicles from no-parking zones will be temporarily halted in Bengaluru until the time new guidelines are framed, the state government said on Wednesday, February 2. After complaints of harassment, state Home Minister Araga Jnanendra said that the issue was discussed with the chief minister (CM) and a new and simplified towing system would be implemented. He added there will be improvements, and the current fines will be revised as well. The decision to temporarily halt towing, he said, was taken to find a suitable solution after problems faced by residents. 

Araga Jnanendra said that he has spoken to the CM, and that a new and simplified towing system will be announced in 15 days. "We have made a decision to find a suitable solution to the problems that the public has raised regarding towing. The government will soon make a decision to ease traffic and citizens' towing woes. I have had a preliminary discussion with senior officials of the department and a decision will be announced soon after consulting with the Chief Minister,” he said in a statement.

“It is our priority to ensure a smooth flow of traffic in the city, but at the same time, police action such as towing of vehicles should not lead to harassment of the public. The present towing system will be stopped in Bengaluru till a simplified system is introduced,” Jnanendra said, according to the New Indian Express.

This came after Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai called a meeting of senior officials on January 31. He held a meeting with DG-IGP Praveen Sood, Bengaluru Police Commissioner Kamal Pant and Joint Commissioner of Police (Traffic), BR Ravikanthe Gowda and told them to review the policy. He also told the police to regulate towing operations. 

Over 100 towing vehicles are reportedly engaged with different police stations in the city. Bommai had earlier said that towing had been outsourced to towing companies, and that the decision will be reviewed. 

There has been a lot of outcry over the arbitrary towing of vehicles by authorities in Bengaluru over the past few months. This outcry got louder after two recent incidents — one which showed a man running after a tow truck that had picked his vehicle, and second where a traffic constable was seen assaulting a woman with disabilities reportedly over a towing issue. 

But the outcry has not been new. Bengaluru residents have often protested the tedious and random rules over towing in the city. Many residents had in August 2021 told TNM that their vehicles were towed without any reason, and that they were charged hefty fines, without being issued an official challan. Many also said that the authorities did not follow the proper procedure mandated while towing improperly parked vehicles. 

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