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Updated January 9th, 2024 at 20:10 IST

Increased jail term for hit-and-run cases causes uproar, truckers block on highways in Gujarat

Truckers on Monday protested across Gujarat against stringent jail and fine norms in the Bharatiya Nyay Sanhita for hit-and-run cases, officials said. Under the Bharatiya Nyay Sanhita (BNS), which replaced the colonial era Indian Penal Code.

Press Trust Of India
Representative image for trucks.
Representative image for trucks. | Image:PTI
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Ahmedabad, Jan 1 (PTI) Truckers on Monday protested across Gujarat against stringent jail and fine norms in the Bharatiya Nyay Sanhita for hit-and-run cases, officials said.

Under the Bharatiya Nyay Sanhita (BNS), which replaced the colonial era Indian Penal Code, drivers who cause a serious road accident by negligent driving and run away without informing the police or any official from the administration can face punishment of up to 10 years or a fine of Rs 7 lakh.

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Officials said protesters set up blocks on highways passing through Kheda, Valsad, Gir Somnath, Bharuch and Mehsana districts by parking vehicles.

The Mehsana-Ambaji highway in Mehsana and Ahmedabad-Indore highway in Kheda were blocked for some time after protesters placed burning tyres on the arterial routes.

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Local police rushed to the sites and cleared the blockades, officials informed.

A video showing a long queue of parked trucks on Ahmedabad-Vadodara highway near Kanera village in Kheda was widely circulated on social media, with those uploading them asking commuters to avoid the route due to a 10-kilometre traffic jam as a result of the protests.

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Kheda police reached the spot and convinced the truck drivers to end the blockade in the interest of other commuters, officials said.

An official handling the NHAI's 'Highway Helpline' said national highway-48 and the Expressway connecting Ahmedabad and Vadodara were cleared by police and there was no blockade afterwards.

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Protesting truck drivers also shouted slogans against the new law on highways in Bharuch, Gir Somnath and Valsad, officials said.

Protesting trucker Bhaiya Khan said the fine amount was very harsh. "If someone had that much money, he would start a business, why would he be a truck driver," Khan claimed.

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Such sporadic protests will continue till January 3, he claimed.

Meanwhile, Tapan Sharma, past president of the Ahmedabad Motor Transport Association, claimed the protests were spontaneous.

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"The association has not given any strike call. Drivers are doing it on their own as they have apprehensions about the new law. They shout slogans and then move on. These sporadic protests have delayed the delivery of goods," Sharma said.

However, business has not been affected so far as drivers are doing their work despite protests, he added. PTI PJT BNM BNM

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Published January 2nd, 2024 at 00:18 IST

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