Many dealers fudging numbers in pollution emissions, say Transport Department officials

Many dealers fudging numbers in pollution emissions, say Transport Department officials

When the Transport Department is trying to make a fool-proof system to avoid manipulation in vehicle Pollution Under Control (PUC) certificates, the dealers are demanding revising of the testing cost.

Officials admit that several dealers are fudging the numbers in the pollution emission of the tested vehicles, and a majority of the certificates issued by the RTA approved mobile PUC testing centres are bogus.

Readings of the pollution emission generated by most of the testing centres in Hyderabad and across the State are unreliable, the officials maintain, adding that in some cases, the persons manning the PUC testing vehicles manipulate the numbers as per the requirement of the vehicle owner.

“To overcome this problem, we are coordinating with the dealers and have also signed an agreement with a third party ‘Smartchip Technologies’ so that vehicle emissions judgment will be done through an automated system from a centralised server wherein certificates will be generated only after the server validates the test results,” Joint Transport Commissioner C. Ramesh told The Hindu.

This will completely negate the role of dealers in judging the pollution levels and they cannot manipulate the test results, he said.

According to Mr. Ramesh, there are 273 RTA approved PUC centres in Greater Hyderabad limits, of which 223 are active and have conducted 3,42,769 tests and 8,693 vehicles have failed the tests. “Out of 493 authorised testing centres, 273 have been made online. We are motivating all dealers to go online,” he said.

The officer said that some testing centres are charging more than the prescribed rates, and they have taken action against them. “The number of PUC centres across Telangana is around 500, and there is a demand to increase the testing price from the present price of ₹30 to ₹50 for two-wheelers, ₹50 to ₹70 or ₹80 for three-wheelers and ₹60 to ₹100 for all diesel vehicles,” the officer said.

He said that the dealers are demanding revision of rates and the department would soon send a proposal with suggested prices to the State government to consider the issue.

Officials of the Transport Department also found that there is a requirement to increase the number of testing centres not only in the city, but also across the State. “Now, there are more than 1.46 crore vehicles, including 1.10 crore two-wheelers registered in the State, and the number increases each day. However, there are 493 PUC centres. The number should be doubled to facilitate more vehicles,” the Joint Transport Commissioner said.

He said that they are also asking the petroleum companies to talk to their dealers and set up PUC centres at fuel outlets across the State. “It’s a good initiative. This will also provide employment to local youth,” Mr. Ramesh said.

As per the prescribed standards under 115 (2) of Central Motor Vehicles rules 1989, all vehicles that are tested for PUC should fall within the prescribed standards. For instance, for a four stroke two-wheeler or three-wheeler manufactured after March 31, 2000, the percentage of CO should be less than 3.5 %, whereas the hydrocarbon emissions which is measured in parts per million (ppm) should be less than 4,500.

For four-wheelers manufactured as per Bharat Stage-II, Bharat State-III or subsequent norms, the percentage of CO should be less than 0.5 % and hydrocarbon emissions should be less than 750 ppm.

Meanwhile, a visit to some emission testing centres found that persons manning it are demanding the vehicle owners to pay more to get a valid certificate in case the pollution emission in the vehicles is more than the prescribed standards.