Punjab assembly concerned over increase in road accidents

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Chandigarh, Mar 12 (UNI) Members of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha today expressed concern over the growing number of road accidents in the state and called for taking safety measures immediately.

The matter was raised during zero hour by Jagdish Sahni (BJP) who made references to accident in Gurdaspur district yesterday involving a bus belonging to his transport company in which 10 passengers lost their lives and another 26 were injured. He demanded that the state government should immediately disperse the requisite compensation to the next-of-kin of the deceased who all belonged to poor families.

At this, Sukhpal Singh Kharia (Cong), while also expressing concern noted that as per official figures, 3363 persons died and 4430 were injured in 5208 road accidents in the state during last year. He demanded to know what had become of the government's proposal to form a Road Safety Council for prevention of accidents as there was total chaos on NH-I and other highways in the state due to the increasing number of vehicles.

Speaker Nirmal Singh Kahlon too expressed his concern with the members and asked Transport Minister Master Mohan Lal about the proposed Road Safety Council.

The Minister said that the Bill for the establishment of the Council would be brought before the House in the current session. He said that it has been proposed that the Council would have a corpus fund for giving an immediate relief of Rs two lakh to the families of the deceased.

He said that the government had just one vehicle interceptor in the state and there was a demand for 11 from the central government.

The interceptors were needed in the state to check over speeding, over loading, drunken driving and other traffic offences, he added.

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