'State investigation teams to fix penalties on Tavera recall'

Written by ENS Economic Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Nov 2 2013, 18:19pm hrs
The Centre has decided to ask the states to set up investigation teams to decide on the penalties for General Motors India following the detection of irregularities in the companys emission norms test that led to recall 1,26,000 Taveras.

The investigative teams will be headed by the respective chief secretaries of the states and will be asked to submit findings within four-months, said a senior road transport ministry official.

This was decided in a meeting called by road secretary Vijay Chhibber and attended by representatives of heavy industries, law ministry and Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion to review the suggestions made by a three-member committee headed by Nitin Gokarn, the chief executive of the National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project (NATRiP).

The teams, to be formed in Gujarat and Maharashtra, will comprise of mechanical engineers, legal representatives, state police and members from Central government. Gujarat and Maharashtra are the two states where GM India has its plants. The financial penalty, according to the Central Motor Vehicle rules, amounts to about Rs 11 crore.

However, a decision on the same would be taken only after the investigation team submits its findings.

The Gokarn Committee had termed the act by GM India a corporate fraud and had called for criminal action against the company.

The three-member panel was constituted to investigate General Motors Indias recall of over Chevrolet Taveras.

The panel, however, recommended imposition of a penalty and a systemic clean-up to avoid recurrence of similar incidents in future.

Although action has been suggested against the company as well as executives involved, the level of penalty has not been specified, sources said.