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Thursday, August 18, 2016

Global Road Safety body IRF appeals to Political parties to Expedite passage of new Motor Vehicle Act for reducing fatal road accidents

International Road Federation (IRF) , a Geneva based global body working for better and safer roads world-wide has appealed to the government and all political parties to help expedite passage of the amended Road Safety and Traffic Management Bill (Motor Vehicle Bill) for saving valuable human lives from road accidents in the country .

The amended Motor Vehicle Act was tabled in the recently concluded Monsoon session of Parliament. 

“Out of global 1.24 million deaths due to road accidents India accounts for about 1.4 lakh deaths ,the highest in the world ,resulting in heavy loss, which a developing country like India can ill afford. Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has to take concrete measures to reduce fatal road accidents one of the highest in the world with aim to halving the number of deaths in road accidents by the year 2020 as India is signatory to UN decade of Action for Road safety.” Said MR K K Kapila, who has been re-elected Chairman of International Road Federation (IRF) for Third Time .

“ To reduce fatal road accidents in the country a tough new amended Motor Vehicle Act with clarification on accountability of vehicle owner for unlicensed driving, hefty fines for traffic violators ,make getting driving license more difficult and bring in new laws on vehicle safety is immediately needed. IRF urges all political parties to help in expediting passage of the new amended Road Safety and Traffic Management bill in the next Winter parliamentary session to begin on November 26 this year ”.said Mr Kapila.

“India accounts for 10 % of the global road accident fatalities highest in the world . Several initiatives for improving road safety such as the much awaited amendment in the Motor Vehicles Act (MVA), improvements in roads from the engineering perspective, road safety audits at all stages of road construction beginning right from the planning stage besides identification and remedy of black spots in a sustained systematic manner on war footing can help bring down fatal road accidents in the country” said Mr. K K Kapila.

“India is signatory to the United Nation’s Decade of Action plan for Road Safety across the world which aims to reduce road fatalities by 50% by the year 2020. The Motor Vehicles Act (MVA) Amendment bill needs urgent approval of the Parliament. IRF hopes it will be cleared in the coming session of Parliament as Road Safety should be utmost in minds of all political parties “said Mr Kapila .

“Clearing and implementation of new MVA, which has provisions for strict Enforcement with appropriate penalties, accompanied by public awareness of the laws which will be a critical factor in reducing road traffic injuries and deaths. Once the proposed amendment is passed, traffic rule violators will have to cough up hefty penalties - almost 10 times more than what they pay now - for offences such as over speeding and drunken driving. The Bill seeks to raise higher compensation for death resulting from a hit and run accident as well as for the grievously injured in such incidents,” said Mr Kapila.

At 2016, we are in the midst of the ‘’Decade of Action Plan’’ and have a mammoth task of catching up with the target of reducing road fatalities by 50% by 2020. A strong political will, which is beyond party politics and differences of opinion, is the need of the hour. IRF earnestly appeals to all political parties of India to stand united for the cause of road safety and pass the amended MV Act (MVA) in the ongoing session of the Parliament.

Mr. Kapila called upon the Hon’ble Members of Parliament to swiftly act by unanimously passing the MVA and enjoining upon the Government to ensure that India meets its commitment of ‘Decade of Action Plan’.

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