Over 11,000 vehicles, including 1,572 belonging to different government agencies, have not had their fitness certificates renewed for more than a decade in breach of rules, and authorities are going to declare those "write-offs" after tomorrow, officials said.
Most of such government vehicles belong to different projects and have not had their fitness certificates updated after the expire of project tenure, they said.
Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) doesn't have any data on how many of these vehicles are in operation now. However, several BRTA officials said many of these vehicles might be running on roads, especially outside Dhaka, as "a significant number" of vehicles have updated fitness after a recent notice was circulated in this regard.
As per law, it is mandatory for a vehicle to go through fitness check-up every year and have its fitness certificate renewed to ply the roads.
The authority recently asked owners to renew fitness certificates of vehicles by June 30. Otherwise, they would be declared "write-offs", meaning their registration will be cancelled, it said.
"This is our routine work. We will cancel registration of vehicles which have not had their fitness certificates renewed in last 10 years after June 30," BRTA Director (operations) Sitanghsu Shekhar Biswas told The Daily Star yesterday.
Of the total 11,228 vehicles, 9,656 belong to different companies and private owners, while 1,572 to different government agencies, he said.
Sitangshu said they had a plan to file cases against each vehicle owner and realise fines from them, but there are some legal complications, which they were trying to sort out.
BRTA revoked registrations of some 15,000 vehicles last year and some 56,500 vehicles in 2018 for not renewing their fitness certificates for more than a decade, he said.
This correspondent talked to a BRTA executive magistrate who regularly conducts drives against unfit and illegal vehicles, and a circle officer involved giving fitness clearance. They said such vehicles usually operate in the suburbs of Dhaka.
The executive magistrate, wishing not be named, said they found such unfit vehicles while conducting mobile courts in Chattogram Road-Narayanganj Road, Tongi and Gazipur areas.
Most of these vehicles are now being operated after modification; for instance, microbuses converted into human haulers, he said. "We usually dump these vehicles," he said.
"The vehicles are riskier and accident prone than other vehicles," he said.
The BRTA official at Dhaka's Mirpur's circle office said they got one or two such unfit vehicle in a week.
"You will find such vehicles more outside of Dhaka city," he told this newspaper wishing anonymity.