PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Directorate of Transport and Mass Transit has decided to allow cars of year 2000 and above models to acquire taxi car permits in order to enhance its revenue and facilitate general public.

Besides, the directorate also decided to abolish the condition of the maximum vehicle service life of 25 years and make the vehicles subject to fitness certificate in case of C-category routes. To this effect, it issued two separate notifications on Monday.

An official document quoted a departmental survey stating that hundreds of illegal taxis and other old commercial vehicles of over 25 years were operating on the roads without getting route permits from the transport authorities.

It said previously route permits were allowed for up to five years old taxis only, which was a cause of inconvenience to transporters besides causing revenue loss to the government.

The document stated that though old vehicles were fined periodically, their presence led to unsafe conditions on roads. It said that operation of these vehicles on roads without mandatory legal documents was causing a huge loss of revenue to the government exchequer.

As such, the department has decided to allow the issuance of route permits to these vehicles subject to their mechanical fitness and road worthiness, it said.

According to the document, many privately-owned vehicles were being used for commercial purposes without the acquisition of route permits and fulfilling codal formalities, and now it has been decided to bring these vehicles into the ambit of transport department by issuing route permits to them.

It said the department had made acquisition of vehicle fitness certificate mandatory for all commercial vehicles after every six months, instead of once a year.

The document said the department had reduced the duration of basic driving course and special driving course to four weeks from earlier six weeks.

It said that most of the applicants could not manage a stretched duration course, and those having driving course certificate from the government driving school would be exempted from driving test for acquisition of a driving licence.

It said that directorate has also streamlined the hierarchy of Motor Vehicle Examiners and notified their formal job descriptions. Also, a dedicated Transport Enforcement Unit would also be established as per long-term plan.

Director transport, KP, Fahd Ikram Qazi said that his department was responsible for regulation of the entire transport in the province besides collection of revenue.

He said they were trying to bring structural reforms which would extend the department’s regulatory ambit and enhance revenue for the provincial government.

He said the department was focusing on introducing IT-based solutions for driving licences and all types of permits so as to facilitate general public and ensure transparency.

Published in Dawn, September 2nd, 2021

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