LAHORE - Helmet prices have almost doubled in the metropolis, as sales have surged after Lahore High Court’s orders to the City Traffic Police to implement the helmet law and make sure that both motorcyclists and pillion riders wear helmet.

A normal range helmet is available in the market for Rs300, but it has only one problem; it does not save people from injuries in case of accidents. However, this low-quality helmet remains in demand in the city, which has a big number of middleclass and lower middleclass people.

Imported helmets, which were available for Rs800 to Rs1,000, are now available at Rs1,700 to Rs2,000 in the market. Helmet prices have also increased at shops located on McLeod Road. A shopkeeper on Litton Road simply puts the blame on the government. He says now companies have increased their rates and resultantly shopkeepers have increased the prices. There are even helmets with price range of Rs4,000 to Rs6,000 in the market.

However, motorist rejected the recent surge in prices of helmets which are now mandatory for both people sitting on the bike. Salman Ali, resident of Shadman, said the government should look into the matter and counter the prices of helmets.

Irfan Jamil, student of computer science said, “It is the responsibility of the state to provide relief to the citizens and current scenario is not encouraging at all. Authorizes concerned take strict action to control the prices of the helmets and price hike is another economy-driven bomb on already suppressed middle class people”.

Eateries District Administration announced to place three vehicles including at The Mall and on Mcleod Road but that announcement has not been followed thoroughly. According to survey conducted by The Nation, no government vehicle was at announced points to sale helmets on discounted prices. The district administration announced to sale helmets on Rs 500 and ordered to check the market on regular intervals to provide relief to the people. 

District administration has also failed to control the prices of the helmet.

On Saturday Chief Traffic Office Malik Liaqat ordered all traffic wardens only to warn the violators on Sunday otherwise implementation of helmets mandatory for pillion ridding would start from December 1 (Monday). 

On the other hand, Punjab Safe Cities Authority on Saturday said PSCA has landed in an accord with country’s national bank for the receipt of payment initially associated with E-Challan fines.

COO PSCA Akbar Nasir Khan and NBP’s SEVP & Chief Information Officer Shahid Saeed Khan met in PSCA headquarter Qurban Lines on Saturday for agreement sealing in the banking services for the e-ticketed motorists. The citizens will be able to not only make their E-Challan payments on NBP cash counters from December 17.

Citizens may also have an Android application and ATM payment solution soon as promised by the NBP technical team comprised of SVP & Regional head Muhammad Saleem Tahir, Vice President & Development Head Amir Maqbool and Software Developer Mehran Khan who witnessed the occasion.

BOP branches are already facilitating the motorists in this regard and bringing in National Bank of Pakistan, now, will further smoothen the process as promised by PSCA, said the spokesperson of the authority.

Motorists can, as usual, check the status of their E-Challan accounts by giving in their CNIC and vehicle registration numbers on web portal ECHALLAN.PSCA.GOP.PK, he added.

It is worth mentioning here that 58,066 tickets were issued to motorcyclists riding without helmets in m Lahore in first five days after the campaign to crackdown on helmetless motorcyclists launched on September 24.