Underage driving and riding is a major menace in India. Various states have been dealing with the problem in their own way. While some of the states have even announced sentence for the parents who let their underage children operate a vehicle, states like Kerala have taken stern steps like cancelling the licence of the parents. Recently, Kerala police cancelled the license of a parent after a video of a minor girl riding a scooter went viral.
The Motor Vehicles Department (MVD) on Monday suspended the licence of a man for allowing his five-year-old daughter to drive a scooter along the busy national highway at Edapally in Ernakulam district.
According to a report by The Hindu, Shibu Francis, who is a resident of Perumpadappu of Ernakulam district was barred by the MVD from holding a licence till July next year, after a video where his daughter could be seen riding the scooter on the national highway went viral on Facebook.
It was reported that the Transport Commissioner K Padmakumar happened to come across this video which was taken by a car passenger, following which he immediately referred it to Ernakulam Regional Transport Officer (RTO) Jojy P Jose, to take action.
As per a report by The Hindu, the case was referred to the Mattancherry RTO Shaji Madhavan since the registration number of the scooter as seen from the video, was found to be belonging to a person within the limits of the Mattancherry sub RTO.
During the inquiry, it was found that the vehicle was registered in the name of Ramachandran, who claims that Shibu had used his vehicle.
Jose reportedly said, “We served a notice summoning him [Shibu] for a hearing during the course of which he admitted to the mistake and attributed it to ignorance. Shibu’s licence was suspended at once after the hearing considering the seriousness of the offence.”
This action of suspending the licence was taken based on Section 19 (1)(f)(h) of the Motor Vehicles Act for causing nuisance or danger to the public and charged under Central Motor Vehicles Act.
Talking to Asianet News, Shaji says, “It looked as if the father was enjoying his daughter driving the scooter, which also makes it look like he was daring the law.”
However, the man in question, Shibu Francis, denied all allegations to Asianet News.
“What you see in the video will not give you the clear picture. My daughter wasn’t driving the scooter like how it appears to be, she was only holding the accelerator when I put my hands down since it was paining,” Shibu said.
Watch the video here :