Buckle Up India. Every trip, every time, no excuses PLEASE.
Sri Gopinath Munde, Union Rural Development Minister and a very popular and highly admired BJP politician from Maharashtra died in a tragic road accident in Delhi yesterday. As he was going to Delhi Airport sitting in the rear seat of a Maruti SX4 Car, a dangerously speeding Indica Car hit his car at a crossroad, instantly killing him. And it is now being very widely said by doctors and forensic experts that had he used the Seat Belt, he would have been saved.
But unfortunately in India, neither in my car nor in any other car have I ever seen rear seat passengers using seat belt. In my car, I have kept the rear seat belts tucked behind the seat in the boot. In introspection, what a shame and disregard to safety. Of course the only valid reason being that the local law as can be seen in the memo at the end of this article, only the driver and the passenger of the front seat are required to wear seat belt. But even this is not being followed or enforced strictly. It is followed only by a microscopic percentage of responsible drivers and front seat passengers.
However the tragic death of Sri Gopinath Munde is having a positive fallout. It seems to have created a deep concern over the lack of basic safety while driving and has drawn specific attention on the need to wear back-seat safety belts, something that’s neither mandatory nor advocated through any awareness programme.
I hope at least now, the front seats safety-belt law is enforced strictly throughout the country to save lives and prevent tragedies. And the importance of rear seat safety belt though not mandatory (for reasons I do not know), is widely canvassed.
Elsewhere in many countries, safety belts for all passengers including safety for babies are compulsory and people adhere to the practice without fail and very normally. People there know that wearing seat belts reduces the risk of death and injury in car crashes. And here despite so many tragedies on our roads we seem to be taking car and road safety matters very casually. This attitude should change.
Follow Every Safety Rule;
Do not cause pain to yourself or anyone,
Save your future,
The future of your passengers,
And your entire family.
Be happy, keep everyone happy.
- N. Raghu.