KARACHI: Police resorted to baton-charge on Monday as scores of applicants desperate to apply for or renew driving licences thronged Motor Vehicle Inspection and Driving Licence branches in Clifton and North Nazimabad areas of the city.
Hundreds of people had reached the Clifton, Nazimabad and Korangi driving licence branches to get their licence issued, after DIG-Traffic Dr Amir Sheikh had earlier warned Karachi’s drivers to get their licences issued or renewed within the shortest possible time.
He had also said violators could be sent to jail under a provision of the Motor Vehicle Ordinance.
Know more: Karachi traffic police may jail drivers without licence from today
The driving licence Clifton branch was sealed as a crowd of applicants chanted slogans to enter the office. At the Nazimabad branch, police baton-charged applicants to disperse the burgeoning crowd.
Taking notice of the disorder, Sindh Home Minister Suhail Anwar Siyal ordered an extension of one month in the date to get licences issued or renewed. He also ordered an inquiry of the three licence branches.
“For those people who have their driving licences but they do not carry with them, we would give them a chance to bring the document and show to us to get their vehicles released,” DIG-Traffic Dr Amir Sheikh said.
“Those who do not have licences altogether or have fake ones would face a harsh penalty and imprisonment of up to one month. Their vehicles would also be impounded.”
He claimed that the entire exercise was aimed at streamlining driving on city roads.
While admitting that there would be pressure on driving licence branches in the city after the traffic police’s announcement, the DIG claimed that all arrangements to help a maximum number of applicants had been made.
According to official figures, only 1.2 million people in the metropolis have driving licences; whereas the total number of registered vehicles in Karachi is 3.8m.
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