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On Monday, a Bench of Justices Mohammad Rafiq and Narendra Singh Dhaddha stayed the order passed by Justice Sanjeev Prakash Sharma following an appeal filed in the matter. Advocate Satish Khandelwal appeared for the appellant.
In May this year, Justice Sharma had directed the state transport authorities to withdraw driving licences issued to illiterate persons, terming them a “menace for the pedestrians“. In this order, he had observed,
“The license cannot be allowed to be issued for driving any kind of vehicle to an illiterate person as he is virtually a menace for the pedestrians as he would not be in a position to understand road signs and notices of caution written on boards for human safety on the highways as well as on the roads in the cities.
The license of Light Motor Vehicles issued to the petitioner and similar persons also must be therefore withdrawn in the light of what has been stated herein above.”
The order had been passed in a petition filed by a light motor vehicle license holder seeking the Court’s intervention in obtaining a transport vehicle licence. The petitioner submitted that he had been driving light motor vehicles for 13 years before he sought the transport licence.
However, the matter took an interesting turn when the Court instead focused on the fact that the petitioner had been issued his driver’s licence although he was illiterate and unable to read or write.
After ordering that the driver’s licence issued to the petitioner as well as all other illiterate persons be withdrawn, the Court had also directed the state authorities to lay down guidelines in this regard.
However, this order has now been stayed by the Division Bench. The Bench has issued notice in the matter returnable by six weeks.
[Read the order]