Haryana Transport Minister Mool Chand Sharma flags off a bike rally to mark Road Safety Week in Panchkula. (Express Photo)
HARYANA TRANSPORT minister, Mool Chand Sharma, said that the state roads saw lesser number of fatalities last year due to the efforts of the state government. He said there were at least 61 lesser deaths due to accidents in 2019 as compared to 2018. Mool Chand was addressing a gathering of people at the beginning of the Road Safety Week at PWD rest house, Panchkula Thursday. He said that while the fatalities have fallen, “The ministry is not interested in just the numbers but wants to see an overall impact where people can be accident free.”
The number of deaths by accident in the state has remained above 5,000 in the past four years with 5,024 fatalities in 2016, 5,120 in 2017, 5,118 in 2018 and 5,057 in 2019. “We want a chapter in school books to be added regarding the traffic rules as it is the youngsters who are most affected in these cases. Everybody has money these days. Parents do not want to say no to their children these days and buy them whatever they desire,” said Mool Chand, adding, “There was a time when people would struggle even for food and cloth. But now everybody has money. Earlier people would not allow their sons to buy bikes as they were worried about him meeting with an accident. The sons would only get motorcycles after they were married off. Earlier people used to take care of their sons.”
Talking about Haryana Roadways, he said, “Haryana roadways is known in entire North India. We have introduced new buses with an emergency button which anybody can press in need. The button will alert authorities in its location. We are also putting in a method where we will get to know where the bus stationed itself during breaks.”
He added, “The Indian government wants to bring the accident numbers to less than 50 per cent of its current scenario. It is improving the roads and highways and traffic rules to improve the numbers.” Stressing on the responsibility of the driver, he said, “A person who is driving is also highly responsible for their own welfare. Driver fitness is necessary. There are people who do not know their eye sight is weak, some who are 70 or 80 year old are driving cars. We will bring in some way to check the driver fitness after every few years so that cases of accidents reduce. It is not about your fitness but somebody else’s life.”
The occasion was attended by Transport Commissioner and joint commissioner also saw a play to educate people. A practical dummy first aid was also given on stage to teach people the various ways of providing first aid in case of an accident. An awareness van was also launched by the minister that will roam around the city for the next seven days. As many as 70 traffic police persons of Panchkula district were also taken to the Red Cross society where they received a first aid course on how to handle road accident victims, told Inspector Mahabir Singh, In-charge of Panchkula Traffic Police Station.