Srinagar: Strict enforcement of road safety regulations and an effective communication strategy at grassroots can go a long way in curbing road accidents, officers and experts have opined.
Addressing as chief guest a day-long traffic awareness programme, organised by Kashmir’s University School of Law in collaboration with NGO named ‘God’s Lap’, the varsity Registrar Dr Nisar Ahmad Mir said that road accident deaths and injuries are preventable if safety norms are followed by everyone with seriousness.
“An effective communication strategy will help raise levels of understanding amongst motorists about the goals of driving as well as about the importance of adherence to road safety laws and regulations,” Dr Mir said, adding that stringent enforcement of legal provisions governing road safety and traffic movement can help reduce road accidents.
“We can also utilise the services of our psychologists to help understand behaviours of reckless drivers. Vehicular movement comes with a risk, but not many take it that way. Some drivers think that it is merely fun to drive, and not something with a goal. That perception has to be changed with greater awareness through media and community-level awareness and engagement programmes,” he said, assuring Kashmir University’s full support to the J&K Traffic Department in raising awareness among motorists with the involvement of the varsity’s NSS volunteers.
Dean School of Law Prof Mohammad Ayoub said that application of modern technological tools can also help curb road accidents, even as he asserted that creating a culture of road safety in the society is the “key to success here.”
“The WHO says road accidents kill more than 1.3 million people every year apart from causing injuries to millions of others. This is a disturbing statistic and calls for a serious intervention by policy-planners, media and civil society to create continued awareness on road safety norms and regulations,” he said.
Keynote speaker Prof Gull M Wani, Head of KU’s Political Science Department underscored why it’s important for academic institutions to include road safety education in their curriculum.
“In fact, road safety learning has to be in the curriculum at every level to help create disciplined drivers,” he said.
KU’s Chief Proctor Prof Showkat Ahmad Shah, who was a guest of honour at the programme, highlighted why grassroots engagement has to be a continued process to raise traffic awareness and build a culture of road safety.
Dr Zahoor Ahmad Wani, ASP Traffic (City Srinagar) talked about constraints in management of traffic in Kashmir and other challenges faced by the Traffic Police, while Mr Ghulam Hassan, Deputy SP Traffic (City Srinagar) suggested how traffic management could be easy if drivers follow traffic rules, avoid wrong parking, and keep patience while driving.
SDPO Hazratbal Mr Musadiq Basoo and Station House Officer, PS Nigeen, Mr Gowhar Hussain were also present. Ms Daaliyah Khan, Secretary of NGO “God’s Lap” presented a vote of thanks.