The Motor Vehicle (Amendment) Bill 2017 was cleared by the Lok Sabha on April 2017 but is still pending for approval in Rajya Sabha. The urgency for the implementation is increasing by the day especially when annually over 1.5 lakh people are losing their lives and another 5 lakhs are getting seriously injured in road accidents. It is the time for action as road crashes in India account formore than 44% of all un-natural accidental deaths in India and 51% of all those killed are between the ages of 18 and 30. It is the time for the immediate implementation of the MVA Bill as the economic loss from road crashes is estimated at 3% of the GDP i.e. Rs 4 lakh crores annually. Well these are not just numbers, these are lives which could have been saved had there been stricter rules, stricter punishment. These were lives which were promises of a bright future. These were probably the bread winners of the family.
After the death of Shri Gopinath Munde in a road crash, the issue of road safety came under the spotlight and Shri Nitin Gadkari, Hon’ble Minister for Road Transport and Highways made a personal commitment to improve road safety. It is here that the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill 2017 comes to play. The Act aims at strengthening statutes related to road safety – such as increase in penalties for breaking traffic rules, more severe punishment for serious traffic crimes such as drink and drive, speeding and driving of vehicles by juveniles. The Bill also tightens regulations for wearing of helmets (more than 52,000 or 35% of those killed in road crashes are two-wheeler users) and seat-belts both of which are effective ways of significantly reducing the risk of death and injury.
All amendments proposed to improve road safety have been unequivocally endorsed by all political parties across the country. More the delay more the increased rate of road accidents in India. Every day that passes without the Act being amended leads to the death of 400 Indians and injuries to another 1300, many of whom will be disabled for life.National Collation of organisations working on road safety and other consumer organisations have been making efforts to draw the attention of the concerned people and enable swift passage of the Bill in Rajya Sabha. The opeds published in various news papers are a result of this. While Mr Parvesh Verma, Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha, expressed his views on the importance of the Bill in the Economic Times; Prof Sri Ram Khanna, Former Head, Dean of Commerce, Delhi School of Economics, Managing Trustee: Consumer Voice has expressed his strong reaction in the Financial Express.
Lets make road safety a national priorityandensure that the law is amendedso that we may have safer roads and save lakhs of lives.
Prof.Sri Ram Khanna, Former Head,Dean of Commerce, Delhi School of Economics, Managing Trustee:Consumer VOICE
- Need of the Hour: Clearance of Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill 2017 by Rajya Sabha to save 404 lives everyday
Shri Parvesh Sahib Singh Verma, Member of Parliament West Delhi