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On 15.121.2011, the Times of India reported that “Cracking down on drivers using headlights on high beams, Delhi traffic police has prosecuted 3000 odd vehicles in just five days.”
“Driving in high beam poses danger for both the motorist using the beam as well as vehicles coming from the opposite direction. While the light dazzles the vehicle owner on the opposite carriageway, the driver using the high beam is also affected as the light bounces off fog. We have been conducting intensive checking not just to prosecute drivers but also to educate them,”explained joint commissioner of police (traffic) Satyendra Garg to Times of Now in the year 2011.
Under Rule 112(4)(a) of Delhi Motor Vehicles Act, the driver of a motor vehicle shall at all times, when the lights of the vehicle are in use, so manipulate them that danger or undue convenience is not caused to any person by dazzle.
High beams are not meant for use inside the city. This is a universally respected road rule. They are supposed to be used only in multiple lane highways where there is no chance of a motorist blinding driver travelling in the opposite direction.
However, even today many vehicles are using high beams in colonies, cities, etc. and many accidents are taking place just because of the use of high beam.
On 26th September, 2018, Heart Care Foundation of India (HCFI) had filed a Right to Information application to Ministry of Road Transport and Highways thereby asking following questions:
Is there any law relating to “high beam lights in vehicles” in India?
Can a vehicle drive on high beam in colonies / cities in India?
If the answer to query no. 2 is “no”, then what is the punishment for a vehicle which is driving on high beam?
What actions / rules Government of India has made for stopping vehicles from driving on high beams in colonies?
How many accidents are taking place because of use of high beam by vehicles in colonies / cities in India?
Vide reply dated 11.10.2018, the Transport Research Wing of Ministry of Road Transport & Highways had stated that:
“Regarding query no. 1-4 of the application: TRW does not collect / compile information regarding high beam lights in vehicles and accidents because of use of high beam lights in vehicles in India. Thus, the information sought by you is not available in TRW”.
It is disturbing that the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways does not maintain any information relating to high beam lights being used by vehicles and also of the accidents taking place because of the use of high beam lights in vehicles in India, even when large number of accidents occur due to high beam lights.
We all need to raise this issue with the concerned authorities and create awareness about not using high beams in the cities.