Nu 10.6M collected in traffic violation fines in seven months

At least 50 drivers on average penalized every day

Traffic: The government coffer has become richer by Nu 10.6 million (M) collected in fines, in seven months, since the Zero Tolerance Day was initiated across the country in April.

Obviously with more number of vehicles, Thimphu tops the list for traffic rule violators with a collection of about Nu 4.4M followed by Wangduephodrang and Phuentsholing with Nu 1.1M and 1.0M collected respectively until October.

On an average, a fine of about Nu 1.5M has been imposed every month to drivers across the country who were either found speeding, double parking, using mobile phones when driving and drink driving, among others.

Of the total of 10,896 drivers, 1,400 drivers across the country have been issued Transport Infringement Notice (TIN) for not carrying their driving license, which tops the list of offence. A sum of Nu 750 is imposed for not producing driving license on the spot. Other frequent traffic rule violations are drink-driving, parking in no parking areas, driving without license, speeding and overloading. (See table)


Drink driving tops the list of violation in the capital. About 867 drivers in Thimphu were issued TIN for drink driving. Thimphu traffic police on October 31 alone issued TIN for drink driving to 22 drivers that translates to Nu 38,500 collected as penalty.

Chief of Police Brigadier Kipchu Namgyel, during a meeting with Thimphu taxi drivers on November 2, said that they are working on stricter penalty for drink driving as the offence not only risks the life of a driver but also of others. A sum of Nu 1,750 is imposed for drink driving today.

The Zero Tolerance Day started since April 17 to bring down the number of vehicle accidents where routine checking goes on from 8am to 3am throughout the country every Friday and Saturdays.

Traffic police division’s officer in Command, Captain Kencho Tshering said that except for a few drivers, most are cooperative. “There has been a drop in accidents especially during weekends,” he said.

Despite RBP’s effort to make drivers understand their responsibility and abide by the law, police said they are often blamed for being biased while some driver tend to start an argument to avoid being penalized.

Brigadier Kipchu Namgyel said that with more number of vehicles in the city, it was difficult to check all the vehicles.

The traffic police stops about three vehicles and allow the rest to go and the same process continues so that people don’t have to wait for long in queue. “And that’s when people misunderstand that police don’t check Prados and Land Cruisers,” he added.

Dechen Tshomo

6 replies
  1. T__J
    T__J says:

    Although I appreciate the introduction of “Zero Tolerance Day”, I really doubt the main intention of the day and the intentions of what the traffic police are doing.
    If you say its for safer roads, policemen hiding in bushes and noting down speeding vehicles does not do much to make roads safer.
    Such practices only give what has been mentioned above, high revenue for the department. If a policeman stands tall at the Thimphu gate saying we’re checking vehicles for traffic violations today, I’m sure 90% of drivers will drive slower and safer, of course the revenue generation may take a hit.
    And about the new rule of drinking if your licence hasn’t hit 3 years, oh wait, you’re not allowed to drink at all if you’re licence is not 3 years old. Would it be too much to ask RSTA to fix a legal limit for that as well.
    I believe the normal legal limit is 80 or 90, so how about a legal limit of maybe half of that for people with licences younger than 3 years.
    Of course all the above are my personal opinions and I’m sure not all will agree with it but hey, more revenue for the country, so no problem i guess.

  2. meto pema
    meto pema says:

    I appreciate the vigilance by the RSTA for safety of the road transport. However instead of fines/penalties, RSTA should focus more on providing Traffic Awareness and Education to the drivers. RSTA should also look into the numerous odd-sized (someitmes invisible) vehicle breaking speed breakers/ bumpers everywhere on the roads. Instead of bumpers, there should be proper demarcations/ signs or signals where speed needs to be minimum. RSTA also should look into providing proof/evidence of over-speeding before collecting the fines. I have observed that the traffic police are registering the offence without any proof/evidence by just communicating through a wireless handset/motorola. This may be rendered invalid if it has to be charged in a court of law.

    MIGNIEN says:

    I apologize Deshen tshomo for the quality of this report . And the synthetic board give in a glimpse of an eye all the summarize of the control report .
    I thank to the police of Thimphu .
    But it is time to help that police : it needs , before all , to build traffic lights . And send to TV programs the traffic rules they have to repeat . To caugth rules violaters on the best , cameras must be installed on the points where happens the more violaters to the traffic rules . i quote the famous crossroads of Norzim Lam where a policeman wave his hands under a central box a little surelevated . Without any result except laughing the tourists who think the country is out of time.
    It is difficult to me to say that being a lover of your country .

    But i hope the GVT and the gup of Thimphu will impulse this building to help policemen .

  4. nakhap
    nakhap says:

    It’s quite an impressive exercise by the police and even more impressed with the details of information collected by the kuensel. Amongst the many offences described above, there needs to be a better education on the parking offences.

  5. chopel
    chopel says:

    Wow! More than the penalty, I would be worried about the type of violation. 7 of top ten listed violation posses risk not only to the driver and passenger in that car, but to the other commuter’s life and properties. This statistics are really high, and no wonder car accident tops the causes of unnatural death in Bhutan.

    Am glad our police are working on stricter penalty on drink driving, still than unlicensed driver, speed, extra load, using mobile phone are equally important issue that need to be addressed. Their figures are not far from drink driving.

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