There has been a bit of confusion on the usage of helmets in Bengaluru since last few days. It all started when the Bengaluru Police shared a picture of an ISI helmet on Twitter urging the two-wheeler owners in the city to wear a helmet while riding. When a curious biker asked Bengaluru Police on Twitter whether expensive helmets having DOT and ECE safety ratings can be used, he was given a clear nod. The real chaos began when R Hitendra, additional commissioner of Traffic Police said during his interview to Times of India that only ISI helmets will be allowed in the city from 1st February and other helmets bearing DOT, ECE or any other international certification will not be permitted. On being asked about the particular replies from the official Bengaluru Police Twitter handle, the cop stated that such errors were done by someone and the said post was asked to be removed.
The incident clearly shows how misinformed the Bengaluru Police is. Helmets having international certifications like DOT, ECE and SNELL go through extensive tests and their price starts at as low as Rs 2,500 reaching up over Rs 1 lakh. It should be addressed by the Bengaluru Police that banning of such helmets is of no good, especially in such a case when they are prohibiting the use of helmets that are way more safer when compared to the ISI ones. In comparison, you get an ISI approved helmet at just Rs 650 and the safety regulations for these helmets isn't as stringent as it is for DOT or ECE.
A few days back, the Bengaluru Traffic Police drove a campaign in which the cops penalised people who wore non-ISI and half face helmets. Such helmets were being seized by the cops and kept to be destroyed at a later stage. While the said move seems completely logical, the recent one essentially needs to be given a thought again. As of now, Bengaluru Police seems to be penalising people who're more concerned about their safety and are paying for it as well instead of taking actual steps to improve overall safety. While we aren't sure how this rule will be implemented from the mentioned date, sticking to their present stand certainly doesn't make Bengaluru Police look stand.
BTP will write to the transport department seeking clarification about the non ISI helmets in view of the claims from the buyers of imported helmets are better than ISI. Till they reply BTP will not take any action on them.
— R Hithendra, IPS. (@AddlCPTraffic) January 23, 2018
The latest update is the R Hithendra, Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic) has just tweeted that the Bengaluru Traffic Police will write to the transport department seeking a clarification about the helmets having certifications like DOT and ECE. He also said that until the time they get an answer, no action will be taken against the owners of such helmets.