The steep increase in penalties for traffic violations proposed in the new draft Road Transport and Safety Bill, 2014, is welcomed. Apart from hiking penalties up to 50-fold, it also proposes stringent action that includes suspension or cancellation of driving licence and a jail term for serious violations.
These proposals, when put into action, should discipline the traffic violators. Paltry monetary penalties and the dismal prosecution of offenders have turned many to be reckless behind the wheels, turning the roads as race tracks, with scant respect to the loss of life and limb of innocent victims in road accidents.
It is appalling that people who frequent night clubs and restaurants and spend huge amounts of money on alcohol and food do not spend a few thousand rupees to hire an experienced driver or take metered cabs to reach home safely. Unfortunately, the predators remain blissfully remain unaware of how much hardship the family of the road accident victims have to undergo and how the victims are thrown out of gear for life.