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Bengaluru Metropolitan Land Transport Authority (BMLTA) Bill 2022

Context:

The Karnataka Legislative Assembly Tuesday passed The Bengaluru Metropolitan Land Transport Authority (BMLTA) Bill, 2022, which had been tabled in the monsoon session earlier this year.

Relevance:

GS II: Polity and Governance

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Why the Bill?
  2. Aim of the Bill
  3. Who are the members of BMLTA?
  4. What can BMLTA do?

Why the Bill?

  • Traffic congestion in Bengaluru is a major worry for the state government, as it feels that the traffic woes can deter investors.
  • There have also been complaints of a lack of coordination between various transport and civic bodies, due to which public transport projects have been delayed.
  • Moreover, the National Urban Transport Policy had also laid down a framework for the integration of various departments to enable holistic transport planning in cities such as Bengaluru.

Aim of the Bill:

  • The legislation will be applicable to the Urban Mobility Region of Bengaluru and is aimed at the “regulation of development, operation, maintenance, monitoring, (and) supervision of urban mobility” within the said region.
  • The enactment of the Bill will ensure a Comprehensive Mobility Plan for the gridlocked city, by adopting sustainable urban transport models.
  • Integration of land use and transport planning are also key elements.
  • The legislation also provides for measures such as “congestion parking, parking regulations, tolling, special purpose lanes etc. to regulate travel demand in the Urban Mobility Region.”
  • It addresses the “overlap in responsibilities and functions” of different institutions and departments related to transport in the city.
  • Such overlap, according to the Bill, had impeded the process of planning and implementation of major transport schemes.

Who are the members of BMLTA?

  • BMLTA will consist of 36 members with the Chief Minister of Karnataka as its ex-officio chairman, along with representatives from agencies such as BBMP, Bangalore Development Authority, Bangalore Metropolitan Region Development Authority, Bengaluru City Police, South Western Railways and National Highway Authority of India.
  • Based on the suggestions made in the Assembly, an MLA elected from Bengaluru, who is a minister in the state Cabinet, will be its member.
  • It will also consist of three experts in the field of urban mobility, corporate governance or Law, Finance or Transport economics, two representatives from civil society organisations working in urban mobility, three representatives from institutions and associations representing the private sector and professional bodies, and two representatives from academic institutions.

What can BMLTA do?

  • BMLTA can establish an “appropriate framework for engagement of the private sector in planning, development and management of mobility service delivery and effective contract execution by the Urban Transport Agencies, Traffic Management Agencies and Infrastructure Development Agencies.”
  • Recommending policy measures, issuance of permits, registration of vehicles, operation of mobility services, handling of goods, management of traffic flow and other issues fall under the ambit of BMLTA.
  • The agency will also prepare a parking policy, non-motorised transport policy, transit-oriented development policy, multi-modal integration policy and freight transport policy.
  • BMLTA will also have to prepare a traffic management plan “at least once a year”, with a detailed traffic flow plan for road networks, movement of a certain type of vehicles such as freight and construction vehicles, traffic calming measures including a partial or full closure of streets, traffic management plans for special occasions, incident management plan, emergency evacuation plans etc.
Penalties
  • Any person failing to comply with the rules, regulations, orders or directions of BMLTA can be punished with a fine of up to Rs 1 lakh, which will extend to Rs 2 lakh for a second violation.
  • In the case of continuing violation or non-compliance, the accused can be penalised with an additional fine which may extend up to Rs 5,000 per day during which the violation continues.
  • Officials of various state government departments and agencies can also be punished under the provisions of the law.

-Source: Indian Express


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