Isnt their life worth anything?

The misfortune continues unabated. We are barely coming to terms with the tragedy of the engineering student killed in a road accident at Udyambag and now we have two girls who were still at school being claimed by the fact that we choose to turn a blind eye at reality.

Bella Vista Belagavi

Its getting crazier by the day and while it is convenient to blame the roads and the traffic if not the police who are manning the streets, the truth is that we are flirting with what cannot be undone. How many deaths will it take for the city to wake up to the need for caution before we quite literally empower our children with bikes.

accident
Photo:traffic-accident.biz

While there is a definite amount of truth in the fact that the traffic is getting crazier by the day, the sheer carelessness is frightening.

The family of the kids will continue their struggle with the cruelty of fate but much needs to be said and done regarding the actions of the family if not just the parents and the children themselves. Why is it that these acts are allowed and even tolerated by the citizens of this city.

It is a matter of great pride when we declare that Belagavi is the chosen one when it comes to being among the list of smart cities. However, a smart city is not just smart infrastructure; its more to do with smart and responsible citizens.

What were the parents thinking about when they allowed these kids to take the ride. Isnt it time to rid ourselves of this concept of false prestige over the fact that we take great pride in declaring that our child is yet in school but he or she already knows how to ride a bike? What has been accomplished by these bits of super irresponsible parenting is for everyone to see.

There are definite laws against under age driving and it is time to implement them in spirit rather than just as a matter of compulsion. The law also says that helmets are compulsory but the streets are littered with young and old attempting to bypass the rule itself. For the police, it is sadly a matter of catching a few and imposing fines but implementation is more about true implementation rather than focusing on monetary collections. True, the parent must be prosecuted to maybe even set an example but just thay is not sufficient.

Even educational institutions need go step up the ante and announce that any case of underage riding or driving, stunts and triple riding will be severely dealt with. Cant we make such announcements that violators will be even expelled if necessary. Institutions may say that they dont allow kids without licence to park their vehicles on the campus but what about all those who still indulge and park outside campuses? In the recent cases its observed that the riders have been killed and largely for a fault of their own but what about cases where they managed to kill someone else? What punishment would befit such a crime committed on account of the fool hardy carelessness of the parents?

Parents, take this seriously! If you have an under-18 teenager who has a flair for riding or driving, better keep your eyes open. Parents of minors riding or driving two-wheelers or cars will be arrested. With an eye on the safety of pedestrians and other motorists. Minors cannot be booked according to the law, so their parents who are abetting them to ride or drive will be booked. The police feel that without such stringency it would be difficult to discipline minors or create awareness about road safety and traffic law.

The High Court of Karnataka has asked the police to book parents for minors riding/driving. Under section 184, parents can be sent to jail for six months or fined up to Rs 1,000, or both.

It is time that the action becomes more definite. Its is time that each one wakes up to the responsibility and does everything one can to stop the children from violating rules and taking undue risks. Isnt their life worth anything?

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11 COMMENTS

  1. Sameer you have nailed it correctly, parents should decide responsibly for their children, come on now banning heavy vehicles in peak hour is not the solution, but rather driving/ riding responsibly is the right solution. Can you imagine the economic loss that occurs due to such bans?. Have you really seen the college kids with their vehicles on the roads in today’s secnario, it feels they are in a race with life and death ultimately for many misfortunate souls death wins. It is easier to blame the bigger vehicle as history has taught us, but in last 2 cases he blame clearly lies with the deceased and their parents.
    I too have children but i choose not to let them break the law by under age driving. All parents need to make this their mantra and educate their children on road safety, else the statistics of road kills will never subside. Problems don’t get resolved by ignoring but rather by meeting them head on.
    Choice is yours

  2. RIP girls!
    Firstly my heartfelt condolences to the family.
    How that is the girl is allowed to ride the bike when the minimum age to drive the motorbike (even under 50cc) is 16? Do parents have no responsibility in this incident? I do blame the heavy traffic on the internal roads and people have been raising the concern for quite a long time now, but this is just one aspect of the incident to blame. We also need to blame ourselves for reckless driving, be it riding on the footpath/wrong way/triple seat/no helmets/ the list can go on.

  3. Discipline starts at home, parents are accountable for what their children do! Casual attitude to be blamed. Being said that given the circumstances, the heavy vehicle drive is to be blamed equally! why are heavy vehicles are allowed ply the roads during peak hours. Peak hour commute belong to working people, bicycles, two wheelers, cars, etc. why not make a dedicated lane for bicycles only. just thinking.
    Also, For god’s sake, please stop sharing bloody images of these two poor souls on Whatsapp! Please have show some sensitivity toward this accident and privacy to the family of bereaved.

  4. Its not just Belgaum…Anywhere in India, its the same situation. May be, it is in our Indian DNA. Who are all at fault? – The Government, the local police authorities and of course, all of us Citizens…

    As I had mentioned in another post yesterday, when I confronted some going on the wrong side at the 1st Gate, none of them bothered to turn back. And there were by-standers just eagerly looking into what is happening without coming forward to assist me or question the wrong-doers…

    If WE don’t improve, the System/Situation will not.

  5. Is this what is called Intolerance?I think yes,We have become intolerant towards discipline.we don’t have enough time to think and act about rules framed by law.If everyone does their bit to make things better it is surely possible that we can make our city better.Then,why not start from our home.

  6. The chaos on our roads can be reduced to some extent if the police personnel apprehend the violators of traffic rules and impose fines as laid down by the govt. Youngsters on bikes do not seem to be afraid of police since the traffic police are mere bystanders to the chaos on the roads. Police may seek the help of volunteers from the public to perform the duties of Traffic Wardens to augment the authorised traffic police.

  7. u r right rajesh..we the people only have to follow the traffic rules and be discipline and patient..we the people break the rules and whn we r abt to be fine by the traffic police we get away with a bargain where both r benefited..here is where we r going wrong..the double road of rpd is a racing track and place where boys show off with their bikes and girls with theirs…they ride triple seat …its shame on us ..none of the officals is to be blamed ..its a highway then u hve to follow the rules if the heavy vehicles r prohibited on the highway.thn where will they go ..

  8. More than 80% two wheelers passing by 1st gate to congress road are bypassing the barricades and drive on the wrong side to save distance. Shame on them who are not only putting their life in danger but those who come from opposite. Pls remember its a goa highway not mere city road. Also now more than 90% have stopped wearing helmets, most of them are seen hanging their helmet on the mirror. Whom are they saving? The mirror of their head? Why always blame the officials we ourselves are to be blamed. I see the daily marathi news paper is also against the barricades put in front of 1st gate. Instead of supporting discipline these kind of media too provocate indiscipline.
    Its high time the speedy riders should be questioned and punished. They not only are threat to their own life but also to the passers by. Especially the double road of RPD college is like racing track where the speed has no limit.

    • u r right rajesh..we the people only have to follow the traffic rules and be discipline and patient..we the people break the rules and whn we r abt to be fine by the traffic police we get away with a bargain where both r benefited..here is where we r going wrong..the double road of rpd is a racing track and place where boys show off with their bikes and girls with theirs…they ride triple seat …its shame on us ..none of the officals is to be blamed ..its a highway then u hve to follow the rules if the heavy vehicles r prohibited on the highway.thn where will they go ..

  9. Most residents of Belgaum have a great disregard for laws and traffic rules. Unless there are consequences for wrongdoing there will be fear of breaking rules. The concerned authorities should work the year around to ensure the citizen safety and discourage such acts. Being a resident of a smart city is not enough. Citizens also need to display responsible behavior. There is no need to take pride in accomplishing driving/ riding early.

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