your Legal Advisor
Dear readers, this week Your legal advisor is Ishrat Hasan, Advocate, The Supreme Court of Bangladesh. She is Managing partner of the renowned law firm namely, 'The Law Consultant', Eastern Mansion, 67/9 Pioneer Road, Kakrail, Dhaka, which professionally deals mainly with corporate law, cyber Law, commercial law, family law, employment and labor law, land law, banking law, constitutional law, criminal law, IPR and in conducting litigations before courts of different hierarchies. She can be reached at - cell: 01521515654
e-mail: [email protected]
Last week after completing my office work I was walking on the footpath and just stepped in the zebra crossing to go to the other side of the road. I was having trouble to pass the crossing as vehicles have already occupied more than half of the crossing. Suddenly out of nowhere a human hauler locally known as Leguna turned sharp left from the right and almost hit me. I fell on the road and stop the hauler and asking the driver why he was so rush on that busy road. He was shouting at me by saying 'stand aside' and used some abusive words by indicating that it was all my fault. I asked him whether he had a valid license he said even if he had he would not show me. So far I could reckon the driver was a boy who just turned 16/17. And most importantly that hauler had no looking glasses and was in such a defective situation that could easily risk human life. These vehicles are not only causing the accident to the passersby but also risking the life of passengers inside of it. Is there no law and regulations that can regulate this? Please advise what remedies are available to cure this evil.
Dhanmondi 15, Dhaka
Thank you for your query. This is the regular scenario of our Dhaka city. Vehicle drivers drive very recklessly no matter what the consequences might be. So far I understand your query you wanted to know about the legal remedy available for this particular issue. Let me first tell you the offences the diver has committed. Driving recklessly and dangerously, driving a defective vehicle, driving as a minor or without the license- these are the offences he committed. Now I would like to tell you where the remedy lies.
Firstly, driving negligently and recklessly by violating traffic rules is a punishable offence under Section 143 of the Motor Vehicles Ordinance 1983 with imprisonment up to 6 months or with fine which may extend to one thousand taka. And the license of the culprit driver shall also be liable to be suspended for a period not exceeding one month. Secondly driving a defective and unfit vehicle is also a punishable offence under Section 149 of the said ordinance which says that whoeverdrives or causes or allows to be driven in any public place a motor vehicle or trailer while the vehicle or trailer has any defect, which such person knows of or could have discovered by the exercise of ordinary care and which is calculated to render the driving of the vehicle a source of danger to persons and vehicle using such place, shall be punishable with imprisonment of one month or with fine up to 200 taka. As the hauler had no 'looking glasses' the driver has committed an offence under that Section. Thirdly driving without the license has also been made punishable under Section 138 of the said ordinance the punishment of which is - imprisonment up to 4 months or fine up to 500 taka. As you have mentioned the driver was a boy and was looking for a 16/17 years old kid, he is no way near to be a professional driver and also falling short of more 4/3 years as it requires a minimum 20 years of age limit to be so under Section -4(2) of the said ordinance.
Now, what will you do if you face such situation again in near future? The first thing you will do is - try to catch the driver and complain to the nearest traffic sergeant because under Section -160 only the traffic sergeant is empowered under the said ordinance to arrest the alleged driver without the warrant. Or if you miss to catch him you can take a note of the plate number of the vehicle and make a GD at the nearest police station. Nowadays we all are suffering from this horrible traffic incidents. I appreciate your endeavour that you wanted to know the legal remedy which only a few people would like to know. I hope the above opinion meets your query.