Two wheelers with less than 100cc engines won’t have pillion seats

BENGALURU: The state government has decided to not allow two-wheelers below 100 cc to have pillion riders. It will impress on two-wheeler manufacturers not to attach a seat for pillion riders on motorcycles with engines with a capacity lower than 100cc if they want to sell their products in Karnataka.

A notification to this effect was issued by the Transport Department on October 16 in compliance of the Karnataka Motor Vehicle Rules, 1989. The rules say, “No pillion seat shall be attached to motorcycle with less than 100 cc engine”. The purpose behind it is to prevent pillion riders becoming easy victims of accidents.

However, the state used to issue ‘type approval’ certificates to the motor vehicle manufacturing companies allowing them to sell their two wheelers attached with pillion rider seat against the rules till now. But, this contradiction was pointed out by the Karnataka High Court recently while hearing a accident insurance case from Mysuru involving a minor. Taking note of it, the state government issued the notification and informed the court about it. The case is still pending, a source said.

Confirming the notification, Transport Commissioner B Dayananda said that it will be given effect prospectively and not retrospectively. Therefore, this notification has nothing to do with existing motor vehicles with 100cc engines. The state government is considering to amend rules to allow new motorcycles with engines below 100 cc, as there was a opinion among people that this notification will affect the middle class.

“Such restrictions hardly exist in other states. The number of two-wheelers with engines smaller that 100cc are less in number in the market. But the state is likely to take a call on the lines of other states,” a source in Transport Department said.

Transport Department Principal Secretary Dr B Basavaraju said the issue is being examined by the government and decision will be taken accordingly after the government takes a final call on it.

As of now, the Transport Department issues ‘type approval certificate’ to manufacturing companies ignoring the Rules 143(3), considering the certificates issued by the authorised vehicle certifying agencies like ARAI and CIRI for 1+1 to the two-wheelers attached pillion rider seat. Now, this can’t be done.

“We have decided not to issue ‘type approval certificates’ to manufacturers that intend to sell two-wheelers with pillion rider in below 100 cc vehicles,” an official said.

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