International Road Federation (IRF), a Geneva-based global body working for safer roads, has expressed shock at Union Rural Development Minister Gopinath Munde’s demise in a road accident and asked the government to draw a road map to fix killer spots.
“IRF condoles the untimely demise of Union Minister Gopinath Munde… We urge the government to fix killer accident prone black spots… These black spots, where accidents occur again and again, have been identified by the Delhi Traffic Police as well as the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH),” it said in a statement.
Annually, at least 1.40 lakh people get killed in road accidents in the country, which accounts for more than 10 per cent of the total road fatalities across the world.
“The fixing of the flaws in about 20 black spots identified in the capital, including ISBT Kashmere Gate, Punjabi Bagh Chowk, Mukarba Chowk, AIIMS, Bilaspur Chowk (GTK), ISBT Anand Vihar, Mahipalpur Chowk, Dhaula Kuan, Rajokri Flyover… and Ghazipur red light will help reduce the city’s morbid record of losing about 1,900 lives per annum,” said IRF Chairman K K Kapila.
Global agencies involved in road safety have blamed lack of policies and enforcement as the main reasons behind increasing road fatalities in the country, he said, adding that the Aurbindo Road crossing where Munde’s fatal accident took place is also one of the killer black spots identified in the capital.
India is also a signatory to the United Nation’s ‘Decade of Action plan for Road Safety’, which aims to reduce road fatalities by 50 per cent by the year 2020.
64-year-old Munde, the Rural Development Minister and the OBC face of BJP in Maharashtra, died apparently of shock and cardiac arrest suffered during a road accident early today.
Budget earmarked Rs 3.40 crore for the Nirbhaya Fund, to be used for the upkeep of security of women.
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