Keltron Halts Issuance of Traffic Violation Challans from AI-Based Cameras in Kerala

Keltron, the state-run electronics company responsible for operating artificial intelligence (AI) cameras in Kerala, has ceased issuing fine challans for traffic violations detected by the cameras. The decision comes as the number of traffic violations detected exceeded expectations, surpassing 50 lakhs despite a contractual obligation to issue only 25 lakh fine challans annually.

Under the terms of the contract with the government, Keltron was supposed to issue 25 lakh fine challans within a year. However, once the number of violations surpassed 50 lakhs, the issuance of challans was halted. Currently, the government provides Rs 20 per challan to cover printing costs, postage fees, and other expenses, but Keltron has sought additional compensation from the Motor Vehicles Department (MVD), which is under government review.

Although Keltron has stopped serving paper challans, the AI cameras continue to operate across the state. Upon detecting traffic violations, Keltron sends e-challans to vehicle owners and notifies them via SMS on their registered phone numbers. However, many individuals overlook these notifications, leading to a decline in revenue collection from 30 percent to 8 percent.

To address non-payment of fines, the Motor Vehicles Department has blacklisted 15 lakh vehicles that have failed to pay fines. Fines are typically collected when vehicle owners approach the Motor Vehicles Department for services.

As the AI-based camera project approaches its one-year anniversary on June 3, data shows that only Rs 64 crore out of the total fines imposed, amounting to Rs 300 crore, have been paid by vehicle owners. Keltron, which invested Rs 165 crore in installing cameras and setting up control rooms, faces challenges in revenue generation amidst the halt in issuing challans.

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