As per "The Accidents India 2016" report road accidents are one of the leading cause of deaths in India. While explaining the provisions of Motor vehicle amendment act, explain how these provisions can help in reducing deaths due to road accidents?|

In India every year 5 lakh road accidents are reported. As per the road and highway ministry report “The Accidents India 2016” 17 people died in road accidents per hour in India. According to police statistics, negligence by drivers is one of the major reason behind road accidents. Around 84 per cent road accidents, 80.3 per cent killings and 83.9 per cent injuries are because of the drivers’ fault.
In order to improve safety scenario in the country, the Motor Vehicles Act (MVA), 1988 was amended to proposes to heavy penalties for violators. The important provisions of the amendment act are:

  1. Fund
    There is a provision for Motor Vehicle Accident Fund to provide compulsory insurance cover to all road users. 
  2. Unified infrastructure
    Sets standards for multi-modal infrastructure to improve safety and reliability
  3. Authorities
    • Motor Vehicle Regulation and Road Safety Authority of India: to improve road safety and vehicle regulation
    • National Road Transport and Multi-modal Co-ordination Authority: to ensure accountability and transparency in the development of efficient  & quality multi-modal infrastructure.
    • Highway Traffic Regulation and Protection Force (HTRPF) to ensure enforcement of act along national highways
  4. Golden hour treatment
    • Provides for mechanisms to ensure cashless treatment of road accident victims during golden hour.
  5. Digitization
    • Unified driving license and unified vehicle registration system, Aadhar based verification for licensing. This will help in reducing corruption in license issue process. Untrained drivers are the top reasons for road accidents and deaths.
  6. Protection of good Samaritans:
    • Good Samaritans will not be held liable for any criminal or civil action.
  7. Punishments
    • Graded penalties mechanism to act as a deterrent and to identify repeat-offenders.
    • Increased penalties for high-risk offences like drunken driving, overloading, non-adherence to safety norms by drivers.
    • In case of juvenile offenders, the owner or guardian will be held guilty and the Juvenile will be tried under Juvenile Act and Vehicle’s registration will be cancelled.

Deaths due to road accidents can be prevented by driving responsibly. The state should also ensure that the law is implemented in spirit. With active cooperation among people and government, such accidents can be prevented.

Question for UPSC Mains:
As per "The Accidents India 2016" report road accidents are one of the leading cause of deaths in India. While explaining the provisions of Motor vehicle amendment act, explain how these provisions can help in reducing deaths due to road accidents? Indian Express | GKToday | HT

Published: September 11, 2017 | Modified:June 27, 2019

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