Mystery shrouds existence of ‘Road Safety Council’
Has not met even for once since its inception; Minister, officials pass bucks
JAMMU, JUN 10: Even as the incidence of road mishaps in the state continue to show a rising trend, the Road Safety Council constituted by the government in March this year to act as Traffic Regulatory Authority of the state and suggest ways and measures to prevent accidents, has not met even for once since its inception.
Sources said that Jammu and Kashmir government had setup the Council headed by the chief secretary of the state vide SRO 52 on the recommendations of the House Committee constituted to look into the causes of road accidents in Chenab Valley region. They said that the existence of the newly setup Council was confined to papers only as it has failed to hold even its first meeting.
The Council was scheduled to meet in Srinagar on the opening of Darbar in the month of May, but failed to do so for unknown reasons.
“Causalities on roads of the state are continuing at an alarming rate but state government has not taken any steps to prevent the accidents and save loss of precious lives. Only yesterday 5 persons have lost their lives in a road mishap at Painthal near Katra” said a political leader on the conditions of anonymity.
It is pertinent to mention here that the Council was set up under the chairmanship of Chief Secretary of the state with Director General of Police, Commissioner Secretary Transport department, 3 Chief Engineers of Beacon and 4 Secretary level officers of concerned departments as its members. The high level council was to advise the government on steps to be taken for collecting, comparing and analysing road accident data, establishment of a road safety fund, creation of trauma and healthcare facilities for the accident victims, besides formulating a comprehensive road safety policy for implementation by the departments concerned.
The council was set up on the recommendations of the House Committee headed by MLA Mohammad Yousaf Tarigami, constituted earlier to look into causes and suggest remedial measures to contain frequent road accidents in the state, particularly in the Chenab Valley region.
Officially, about 2200 persons died in various road accidents across the state during previous years and Chenab valley alone accounts for about 500 deaths.
With the dance of death continuing on the killer roads, 5 persons lost their lives only yesterday in a road accident when a bus on its way to Katra from Udhampur plunges into a gorge near Painthal. Also 13 persons lost their lives in road accidents in Ramban on May 29.
Expressing ignorance about the council, commissioner secretary to Transport Department Dr. Pawan Kotwal said “After joining the post, I have to go for training. I have little knowledge about the Road Safety Council and any of its meetings”.
Minister for Transport and CAPD Qamar Ali Akhoon said that he had constituted the council under the chairmanship of the Chief Secretary in March/April. It was up to them to convene meeting and give recommendations. He has no knowledge of its meeting or functioning.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 10 Jun 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 10 Jun 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 11 Jun 2012 00:00:00 IST
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