Jammu, February 19: Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha today attended the closing ceremony of 32nd National Road Safety Month and Fitness Mela here at Gulshan Ground.
During his visit, the Lt Governor launched 07 Online Services and e-inaugurated 19 ‘Learner’s License Test Centres’ for students at Polytechnics/ITIs across J&K. Buses procured under J&K Transport Subsidy Scheme were also flagged off by the Lt Governor.
During his address, the Lt Governor underlined the significance of spreading awareness on road safety and following traffic rules.
The transition from Road Safety Week to Road Safety Month shows that increasing road accidents is a critical issue. The Government is making continuous efforts to make the public aware and this Road Safety Month was also one such effort, the Lt Governor said.
The Lt Governor also lauded the Traffic police personnel for discharging their duties with utmost dedication and commitment. Not only the transport department and traffic police, but collaborative efforts are required on part of all stakeholders to get desired results on the ground, he added.
Laying special emphasis on reaching out to youngsters and target groups, the Lt Governor called for organizing programs on road safety with people’s participation throughout the year, to create massive awareness on the vital issue. He asked the Transport Department to organize a UT level slogan competition on Road Safety. He further advised the Transport Department for organizing First Responder and Safe Driving workshops every month.
“We need to work on more innovative ideas like Mission Road Safety and Good Samaritan to rope in maximum volunteers in Road safety programs, besides making improvements in the response system as per the requirements”, said the Lt Governor.
The Lt Governor suggested for incorporating mechanism in the accident analysis under Road Accident Data Management System through which the need of making changes in road designs or any other engineering interventions required can be identified so that corrective measures can be taken in collaboration with all the stakeholder departments.
While highlighting various reformative measures taken by the Government in the Transport Sector, the Lt Governor observed that the Government has abolished 9% tax on electric vehicles which is a major step towards conservation of the environment and promoting maximum use of electric vehicles. Road tax on tricycles has also been abolished for empowerment of specially-abled persons, besides, Road Tax on Tractors upto 3000 CC capacity has also been exempted, he added.
Working on the reforms in the Transport Sector and promoting Ease of Doing Business, the Rule in J&K Motor Vehicle Rules 1991 under which new models of Transport Vehicles needed permission from an Empowered Committee has been removed, said the Lt Governor.
The Lt Governor said that an Institute of Driving, Training & Research is coming up in Jammu at the cost of Rs 17 crore which will improve the driving skills and spread awareness about Road Safety and Motor Vehicle Rules reducing road accidents in future.
Similarly, an Inspection and Certification centre worth Rs 14 crore is coming up in Samba to ensure automated fitness of Vehicles without any manual intervention. In the long run, such initiatives will prove to be vital for safe transportation, added the Lt Governor.
Terming faceless, paperless, and cashless services as a major step towards transparent governance, the Lt Governor said that we have introduced a new era in the transport sector. Recently, starting 12 online services of Transport Department and today, with the 07 online people-friendly services, the Government has promoted an effective and transparent public service delivery system in Transport Department, the Lt Governor maintained.
In yet another reformative measure, the Government is providing subsidies amounting to Rs 5 Lakh per bus to develop the 15 years and above old buses into new eco-friendly fuel-efficient ones. During the current financial year, 35 busses worth Rs 1.75 crore were provided to the beneficiaries, said the Lt Governor.
While concluding his address, the Lt Governor called upon all the citizens of J&K to Be Aware, Be Safe & Be Happy. Speaking on the occasion, Sh. Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar, Advisor to Lieutenant Governor, said that the UT Administration is taking several steps so that road safety would be streamlined as per the modern need with the intervention of new technologies.
He also stressed on the need to follow traffic rules and regulations besides cooperation and community participation of all the stakeholders to streamline the road safety mechanism.
In his inaugural speech, Sh. Hirdesh Kumar, Commissioner Secretary, Transport Department, gave an overview of the month-long programme undertaken with respect to Road Safety.
He said that the Transport Department strived hard to make the public aware about road safety and added that several steps are being taken to modernize the department and make the transport system more vibrant by using new techniques and technologies and more user friendly services would be extended to the public with minimum interface with the department.
Sh. Abdul Gani Mir, Additional Director General of Police (Headquarters), spoke about the importance of technological intervention to minimize road accidents across the UT and said this time a month-long programme on road safety was conducted with the aim that the message of safety and importance of life would reach to maximum people.
He said that J&K Police, Traffic Police and Transport Department work shoulder-to-shoulder so as to minimize the loss of lives on roads as life is to be celebrated and not to lose in road accidents.
Popular folk artists, Ramalo Ram and Party presented a folk song on ‘Sadak Surakhsha Jeevan Raksha’, besides an awareness skit on Road safety performed by students of GGM Science College, and a song on awareness of traffic rules and usage of protection gears enthralled the audience.
Seven online services launched today include- Issuance of goods carriage permits; Issuance of temporary permits; Hypothecation termination; Hypothecation addition; Issuance of driving school licenses; Renewable of driving school licenses and Renewable/Registration of Pollution Checking Centres.
BVR Subrahmanyam, Chief Secretary; Dr. Asgar Hassan Samoon, Principal Secretary to the Government, Skill Development Department; Sh. Nitishwar Kumar, Principal Secretary to the Lieutenant Governor; Sh. Mukesh Singh, IGP Jammu; Ms. Sushma Chauhan, Deputy Commissioner, Jammu; Sh. Pardeep Kumar, Transport Commissioner; representatives of transporters, dealers and officials of Transport Department, Traffic Department, scores of students from various colleges and other concerned officers were present on the occasion.