Police stations across the country also add to the list of debris, junk materials generated over a period of time. According to officials, over 1,000 vehicles seized under various offenses are lying in six police stations across the city of Noida in the the state of Uttar Pradesh.
- Most of the vehicles, including bikes, cars, trucks, etc., standing at the police stations are those impounded by police in cases of accident or theft as case property. After they are brought to a police staton, these vehicles are kept under an open sky without proper care. Many of these vehicles can be seen without tyres, tubes, handles, lights, batteries and other basic equipment making it impossible to move them.
- These vehicles are case property and therefore cannot be sold or given to the owner till the disposal order comes from court. Normally, verdict in such cases comes late and till the time the disposal order is given the vehicle is in such a bad condition that it only qualifies as junk. Even in auctions done by the police, there are hardly any buyers. Some of these vehicles are then sold to scrap dealers at dirt cheap prices.
- Many vehicle owners following an accident are more interest in processing the insurance claims. In many cases they just do not come forward to claim the vehicles.
- On the basis of comments made by a police personnel: Though it is the responsibility of the police to ensure that impounded vehicles remain safe, due to the non-availability of space in police stations and other resources, it is not possible to keep these in good shape. These vehicles, some confiscated over a decade ago, lie in the open and are bound to fall apart. Many vehicles are also stolen ones. By the time the police recover the vehicles, the owners have already collected the money from insurance companies and rever reclaim them.
- The system needs a good overhaul because presently the auction procedure and court delays are causing the problem to grow. The procedure to conduct the auction is quite cumbersome and therefore such auctions are held rarely.
- The problem also gets compounded if vehicles seized belong to a different State as it involves communication between two state police departments and as per the present system, delays are inevitable for coming to some conclusion or decision.
The truth is it is not only the Noida city, but many of the cities and towns in India
are facing this problem for years.
One solution to the above issue is to link all the police stations with Information Technology
devices like computers and in turn they should also be linked up with all the branhes of Insurance agencies. This would mean, if a vehicle is stolen in Bombay, for instance, its reporting gets flashed not only in one Police Station in Mumbai
but in all the police stations across the country and also the same information goes to all the insurance agencies in the country.
On similar lines, if a police station confiscate a vehicle its flashing should be sent to all the police stations across the country including all releant insurance agencies. By doing this, false claims can be controlled and also delays can be avoided in delaing with such issues. This suggations may look like a very tall order but could prove to be one of the best solutions to tackle this problem. Laws governing this issue can then be suitably modified to avoid unnecessary court delays and auctioning procedures.
As part of the solution, modified laws on this subject matter should take a good note of the fact that all these vehicles take lots of space in different police stations and therefore speedy redressal of the problems should become the objective of the modified law on this issue. There should also be provision to send these vehices directly to junk yards without involving any middlemen for creating space in the affected police stations.