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Govt defers implementation of six airbags in passenger cars by one year

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday announced that the government has deferred the implementation of the proposal to make six airbags mandatory in passenger cars by one year to October 1, 2023. 

Govt defers implementation of six airbags in passenger cars by one year announces Nitin Gadkari gcw
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First Published Sep 29, 2022, 3:20 PM IST

The government has deferred the implementation of the proposal to make six airbags mandatory in passenger cars by one year to October 1, 2023, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Thursday. The government had earlier planned to make six airbags mandatory in eight-seater vehicles for enhanced safety of occupants from October 1, 2022.

''Considering the global supply chain constraints being faced by the auto industry and its impact on the macroeconomic scenario, it has been decided to implement the proposal mandating a minimum of 6 Airbags in Passenger Cars (M-1 Category) w.e.f 01st October 2023,'' Gadkari said in a tweet. The minister further asserted that the safety of all passengers travelling in motor vehicles irrespective of their cost and variants is the foremost priority.

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The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, on January 14, 2022, had issued a draft notification that mandated vehicles of category M1, manufactured after October 1, 2022, to be fitted with two side/side torso airbags, one each for the persons occupying front row outboard seating positions, and two side curtain/tube airbags, one each for the persons occupying outboard seating positions. 

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Category M1 vehicles comprise vehicles having no more than eight seats. An airbag is a vehicle occupant-restraint system which interferes between the driver and the vehicle's dashboard during a collision, thereby preventing serious injuries.

Road safety came into the limelight once again after business tycoon and former CEO of Tata Sons Cyrus Mistry died in a car crash while on his way to Mumbai on September 4. He was not wearing seatbelts. Cyrus Mistry and Darius's brother Jahangir were sitting in the back seat.

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Data from the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) show that over 1.55 lakh people died in road collisions in India in 2021, which is the greatest death toll ever recorded for a calendar year. This equates to an average of 426 deaths per day or 18 per hour.

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