Report – Based on PIL seeking airbags in vehicles Madras High Court issues notice to Centre and TN

Posted on: Feb 19, 2014 - 3:41pm IST

A concerned citizen, K Baskaran from Paramakudi near Madurai, has filed a public interest litigation seeking the installation of airbags in all vehicles in the country.

A Times of India report states that the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court has ordered the issue of notices to the principal secretaries of the transport departments of both the Central and State governments on this issue.

VW Polo GT TSI front three quarters left
VW recently announced that all variants of the Polo would get airbags.

In the PIL, Baskaran states that India has 11.49 crore cars, 10.53 crore jeeps, 9.67 crore taxis, 8.96 crore buses and 33.5 crore other registered vehicles. As many as 84.27 lakh road accidents took place between 2012-14, the PIL says.

Apart from seeking the Court’s direction to make airbags mandatory in all vehicles, he sought the cancellation of licences of carmakers if the vehicles they manufactured weren’t equipped with airbags when they leave the factory.

Global NCAP Hyundai i10 crash test press shot
In a recent Global NCAP test, the top 20 percent of cars sold in India received a zero star rating.

Baskaran’s pleas aren’t misplaced as a recent Global NCAP study revealed that 1/5th of all cars sold in India aren’t safe for either adult drivers or child passengers in the rear. The report also said that the mere installation of airbags can get the cars a much better safety rating.

[Source – The Times of India]

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11 thoughts on “Report – Based on PIL seeking airbags in vehicles Madras High Court issues notice to Centre and TN

  1. Sridhar says:

    Thats a very good initiative taken up by a citizen.
    It is high time that car makers too educate the people about safety and not just try to cut cost by forgoing the safety features for competing in the market.
    It may bring up the overall manufacturing cost of the car marginally but human life is much more valuable.
    Wish the Government makes Airbags and ABS mandatory.

  2. Ramish says:

    In my opinion, making safety features mandatory would be beneficial for the people and the environment.
    – People would be much safer
    – Slight drop in demand of cars, thus savings on fuel subsidy, road congestions and lesser environmental issues
    – less accidents in turn leads to saving of courts time, investigating officers time, productive time of working adults and also saves on hospital expenses

    These things may sound not so relevant, but thinking on a macro scale for a country with a population of 130+ crores, it may make a difference…

    Of course Mr. Bhaskaran is stretching a bit too far, for beginning safety features should be mandatory on new vehicles.
    Definitely car companies will oppose any such move till the last moment, but its the ‘Aam Aadmi’ who shall matter more to the government that the lobbyists from the car companies…

  3. Sarath Kumar. C says:

    A vast work on awareness about importance of airbag must be done.If people know about it, i am sure they will invest a little more to safety airbags.

  4. Dr. Nayak says:

    Corrupt politicians and burocrats ruined India forever. This is a good move buy a concerned citizen.

  5. Raj Chatterjee says:

    Yes we are in good direction. Airbags and ABS must be standard for all variants. Moreover instead of body length, engine capacities and form factor deciding the excise slabs; safety star rating and fuel efficiency slabs must be deciding factor for lower excise duties.

    1. Ramish says:

      What an !dea.

  6. sayan says:

    To keep price low Car companies do not give airbags.
    Very true.
    But i think they can at least give airbags as options in all variants so that many buyers can opt for and make their journey SAFE.
    At least 2 airbags for Driver and Co-driver.
    Don’t know why the BASE & MIDDLE VARIANTS of most cars do not have these SAFETY Options.
    This situations must change fast to make Indian roads much more SAFER.

  7. sandy says:

    I salute Mr. K Baskaran for raising this issue concerned to public benefit. But we need to have stringent norms not only for new vehicles but others that are still running unprotected, better policy to close the gap between the kind of vehicles running on the roads since a small hatchback fully equipped with safety technology still stands at risk against non-safety equipped SUV in case of head on.

  8. Bhargava says:

    That’s a very good development! I hope the Indian government implements the stringent safety standards on par with the Germans.

    If safety is regulated, people will comply, but if it is given as an option, most people will take it for granted – and the automobile manufacturers are forced to cut-short on the safety front to please the price-conscious consumers and dive through cut-throat market competition.


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About the Author
Karthik H

A bit of a car freak and a bike nut, and a fan of trucks and technology too. Expect sharp stories that focus on those four fronts. As always, stay tuned to for quick and unassuming updates from across the world.