- Why need for new Road act?
- Road Safety and Transport Bill 2014
- Health ministry’s suggestion on Road safety bill
- Mock Questions
Some Disturbing Facts:
- One accident every minute and one Indian dead every four minute (From such accidents)
- Every year, 1.38 lakh Indians die in road accidents
- Road death rate= ~17 deaths per 1 lakh population.
- The Social cost of those deaths ~Rs 1 Lakh Crore.
- 63% of those deaths occur on National and State Highways.
Ya, but Why need new act?
1988: Motor Vehicle Act was made. It has outlived its utility because:
- Drunk drivers murder dozens yet “Taarikh pe Taarikh” and bailouts. Even if convicted, fines and jailtime too low to act as ‘deterrent’.
- Urban areas = too many vehicles, congested roads, heavy traffic => traffic violations.
- Corruption at both RTO-license and traffic police level.
- Lack of effective road engineering, faulty Detailed project reports (DPRs) => more accidents.
- Need for road safety education and training.
The old act doesn’t cover these aspects. Therefore, we need a holistic Act at par with international acts in road sectors. After the death of Ex-Union Rural Development minister Gopinath Munde in a road accident, Government finally woke up and began working towards a new Act.
- By Road transport and highway ministry.
- This new draft bill drafted using good practices from 6 advanced countries – USA, Canada, Singapore, Japan, Germany and the UK.
- Bill to be tabled in the Winter session of parliament.
- let’s check its salient features
|1. Motor Vehicle Regulation & Road Safety Authority of India|
|2. National Road Transport & Multimodal Coordination Authority|
|Unified Driver Licensing System|
|Unified Vehicle Registration System|
|Public passenger Transport|
|Goods Transport & National Freight Policy|
|Causing child death||3 lakh fine + minimum 7years|
|Diving under influence of drugs or desi liquor|
|Rash driving||License will be cancelled|
|Using vehicle in unsafe condition|
|Faulty mfg. design of vehicle||Company will have to pay 5 lakh fine per vehicle.|
|Traffic signal violated 3 times|
|Using mobile while driving|
- When you do shopping with credit card. You’re given ‘points’, later you can redeem those points for discount/gifts etc.
- Similar concept in traffic violation, called “Graded point system”
|2 points each|
|3 points each|
- Penalty points remain in your ‘account’ for 3 years.
- If you earn total 12 points, your license will be suspended for a year.
- If you get 12 points for second time then license will be suspended for five years.
Overall Vision of the Bill:
- Reduce road accident deaths by 2 lakhs in next five years- via those hefty fines and jailtime.
- Improve GDP by 4% because of safe road transport
- Create 10 lakh new jobs (via those ‘outsourced license tests, and indirectly via GDP improvement and subsequent investment in road-transport sector).
- long distance drivers must take “mandatory rest” during the course of their journey.
- “psychiatric evaluation” of heavy vehicle drivers.
- heavy penalty for drunk driving and use of mobile phones while driving
- Enforcement low beam headlights and horn related rules
- Drivers should be asked to pledge organ donation when they apply for license.
- Regular medical check-up for drivers
- Properly designed pedestrian crossings and speed breakers
- Provide ambulances along highways
- Don’t sell petrol unless two-wheeler driver is wearing helmats.
Criticism by Truck lobby
Truck Union did not like this bill. NOT ONE BIT. They give following reasons:
- Fines are too high. Will promote even more corruption. e.g. Driver will offer 1000/- to cop to let him go, instead of paying 2500 under the law. And Cop will be more willing, because 1000 rupees.
- Bad roads, traffic congestion and low quality vehicle-technology lead to accidents. Higher fines are not solution to accident problem, UNLESS you’re going to fix the stupid roads first.
- Truck industry already bleeding due to low margin and heavy costs of operation.
- By and large, truck drivers follow traffic rules. The main culprits are those rich-brats with BMWs- they should be made to pay heavy fines.
CSAT Prelim: which of the given is a statutory body? Which of the following are the provisions under Road Safety bill 2014 -they will give you some of the good sounding “suggestions” which are not part of the bill (e.g. mandatory sleep for truckdrivers), you’ve to eliminate accordingly.
- Write a note on the salient features of the draft bill on Motor vehicles and suggest further amendments in it. 200 words.
- Discuss the need for the National Road Policy? What are the reasons for high accident deaths in India? How does the draft Motor Vehicle act address those issues? 200 words.