Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) is taking 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.

Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) while inaugurating a two day conference ON ‘Road Safety Initiatives ,status and way forward” organised jointly by International Road Federation (IRF) India Chapter along with the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) and Ministry of Urban Development said “Ministry of Road Transport is working a step further to make India accident free, a new amended Motor Vehicle Act is on the anvil and will bring in hefty fines for traffic violators ,make getting driving license more difficult and bring in new laws on vehicle safety”.

“Out of global 1.24 million deaths due to road accidents India accounts for about 1.5 lakh deaths ,the highest in the world ,resulting in heavy loss, which a developing country like India can ill afford. Ministry of roads on its part is working on improving road engineering, converting two lane roads into four lane, improving quality and adding safety features on roads and identifying and reducing fatal road accident spots and develping pedestrian crossings and under passes” said Mr Gadkari.

“We are also in touch with automobile manufacturers to incorporate more safety features, buyers of vehicles should also go in for vehicles having more safety features “ the minister said.

“The Government is mulling to establish the National Road Safety and Traffic Management Board – an apex body to address all road safety related issues in the country by end of this year. The board, under the ministry of road transport and highways (MoRTH), will be focusing on ‘regulation of road safety, traffic management system and safety standards in highway design and construction.’ Said Vijay Chhibber, secretary, road transport and highways ministry, While speaking at the seminar.

“The proposed Road Safety and Traffic Management Board will help in the development and regulation of road safety, traffic management system and safety standards in highway design and construction. The board will have overarching powers to seek explanation and issue directions to both government and private agencies on all issues relating to road safety.” Said Mr Chhibber.

“Government will extend its pilot project of providing cashless treatment worth Rs 30,000 to accident victims on all National Highways in the country A pilot project was started on stretch of Mumbai Baroda and Ranchi Jamshedpur. Currently the pilot project is running successfully on 226 Km Gurgaon-Jaipur stretch.” Mr Chhibber said .

“About 300 road safety experts attending the seminar from India and abroad to discuss the status of safe roads and mobility in the country and finding ways and means to reduce fatal road accidents including road safety management, safer roads and mobility, safer vehicles, safer road users and post-crash response.

“With 80 per cent of all road deaths worldwide estimated in low income countries , India leads the world inroad accident deaths, with around 1,40,000 people being killed each year. India accounts for 10 % of global road accident deaths . Safer roads and mobility is one of the five pillars of the UN Global Plan for the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020. The pillar emphasizes the need to raise the inherent safety and protective quality of road networks for the benefit of all road users.” Said Mr K.K.Kapila, Chairman, International Road Federation (IRF).