ASSOCHAM, a leading association of business houses, hosted a high-powered conference in New Delhi on the theme of Safe Road, Safe Life at the Plaza Hotel in New Delhi. Representing ASSOCHAM, Mr. Babu Lal Jain in his welcome address outlined the goals of the Conference: Only safe roads could ensure safe lives!
The event saw very high profile panelists all agree that much much more needs to be done if India’s killer roads have to become safe for pedestrians, children and motorists alike.
In his address, Chief Guest Mr. Gopal Rai, Transport Minister, Government of Delhi, spoke about the need to urgently change the culture of citizens to issues of road safety. No number of government actions could yield fruit if the citizenry did not change their callous attitudes to driving irresponsibly on the roads, he said. He outlined the several impressive measures his Government was engaging in to render Delhi’s roads safer. Delhi’s Special Police Commissioner for Traffic Dr. Muktesh Chander spoke about the daily challenges his force faced in policing Delhi’s errant traffic.
Chairman of the International Road Federation K.K. Kapila spoke on how mid-way into the UN Decade of Road Safety, very little progress had been made in India to ensure road safety. The daily road accident fatalities in India was truly horrific, he said. It was as if four or five jumbo jets with full passenger loads crashed every single day!
UNIC NIO Rajiv Chandran spoke of the UN #SaveKidsLives campaign and of the information challenge that remained in changing public attitudes towards road safety.
A slew of specialists representing various related industries of insurance and safety research also addressed the conference.