'No helmet no fuel' initiative, introduced by the authorities concerned citing a number of causalities in recent past, is being outwitted openly in the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad where the fuel pump owners adopting various tricks to sell their product and public is also interested in just getting their bike tanks to be filled.
A number of Close Circuit Television footages shared by the citizens on social media from various filling stations of twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad show mockery of the initiative where pump owners have their own helmets and if a biker is without it they put on one on his head before filling the fuel in his tank. This attitude shows how casual we are even on the lives claiming issues.
The idea first ever introduced in Bangladesh, where legislation was passed in 2017 to bar the pumps from selling petrol to those bikers driving sans helmet, was later adopted by India and Pakistan.
The initiative was taken by the Punjab's apex court to ensure wearing of helmets for riders. On the directives of the court, the Punjab government issued an official handout depicting complete ban on provision of fuel to those bikers violating the rule. Following the Punjab, the federal capital's administration also issued the same orders.
Dhaka and Delhi however managed to implement the initiative showing significant decrease of bikers' deaths in head injuries but unfortunately here in Pakistan the initiative taken is just being ridiculed. On a few pumps where it is strictly complained the bikers in a deceptive move borrow a helmet just to get their vehicles tank filled and when the job is done their riding on road starts sans headgear.
Talking to APP, Islamabad Traffic Police (ITP) Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Furrukh Rashid said the ITP were determined to follow the guidelines issued by the District Magistrate and his deputed officials were dealing with such complaints in field. To a query, he said the video recently surfaced on social media showing a pump staffer facilitating every violator for having fuel was pictured in Rawalpindi and claimed that the order was being followed in letter and spirit. He said such episode was not reported in the federal capital yet, adding that the ITP had conducted a meeting with all petrol pump owners in which they were categorically informed that the pump would be sealed who dared to breach the rule.