3-point seatbelt now mandatory for all, a notification soon: Nitin Gadkari

Union Road and Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari spoke at a press conference on ‘Automobile Safety Ecosystem in India’, and offered some points regarding the general safety of cars in India. To begin with, Gadkari outlined how three-point seatbelts would be made mandatory for all front passengers; Only a few days are left for the notification of which to come. An independent agency (India NCAP) will aim to rate automobiles in the country on the basis of their safety features.

Thanks to the above India NCAP rating, buyers will have to make more conscious choices based on safety ratings. Apart from this, the government will work on other safety features like electronic stability control, advanced emergency braking system, lane departure warning system. Presumably, some parameters will be set to keep these safety features as standard or at least as an option for some four and two-wheelers.

The emphasis on road safety by the government is due to the fact that 1.5 lakh people die in road accidents every year. There is a dire need to improve the integrity of the vehicles, and hence, the overall safety for better safety of the passengers. While most high-end automobiles have all these safety features as standard, there is no reason why at least some of these features need to be standard in every single car on sale in the country.

He mentioned how there is a movement towards green hydrogen, and how it could be the fuel for the future. In fact, Gadkari firmly believes that in the next two years, electric vehicles will cost as much as other internal combustion automobiles. He also believes that India will be the number one manufacturing hub for automobiles in the world within five years.

Gadkari also revealed that he had recently held talks with Tesla’s India chief to persuade him to set up his plant here, given that India is a huge market. “Tesla is welcome, but making in China and selling in India is not a digestible concept,” he said.

To add to this, Gadkari requested Tesla to set up its plant in India, as they are bound to get quality production value and good sales. All these notable developments will not only affect the safety of automobiles in India but will also affect the shift away from ICE-powered automobiles.