Mandatory emergency buttons in buses now

Centre will issue notification on June 2

Mandatory emergency buttons in buses now
All public transport buses in the country will soon have to install emergency buttons, CCTVs and GPS-enabled tracking devices to ensure safety of women commuters.

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways will come out with a notification to this effect on June 2. “To ensure safety of women after the unfortunate Nirbhaya incident, we have decided to make it mandatory for public transport buses in the country to install emergency devices,” Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said here on Wednesday.

He was speaking after launching a pilot project under which the Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation will run 10 luxury and 10 ordinary roadways buses fitted with emergency buttons and CCTV cameras, here. The Centre had sanctioned 50% funds for the pilot project. Gadkari said the government is looking at installation of such devices at the manufacturing stage itself.

Earlier this month, the Road Transport Ministry had issued these draft rules under the Motor Vehicles Act and had sought comments from stakeholders, including vehicle manufacturers.

As per the proposed notification, transport vehicles with a seating capacity of over 23 passengers will compulsorily have CCTV cameras that will be connected to the global positioning system and will be monitored by the local police control room.

The minister said that in case of any untoward incident, a woman passenger would be able to press the emergency button which in turn will transfer the information to the nearest local police station via the GPS. Once the emergency signal is triggered, the CCTV cameras will start displaying live footage of the bus at the central control room. Besides, if a vehicle deviates from its prescribed route (monitored through  GPS), the system will start sending signals tracking its movement to the control room.

Minister of Transport for Rajasthan Yunus Khan said all buses in Rajasthan will soon be equipped with such devices. Under the initiative, the emergency button can be used by passengers to alert the officials.

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