BHUBANESWAR: As road deaths continue to be a major cause of concern in Odisha, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has engaged a Delhi-based agency and a research group from IIT Delhi in as consultants to conduct an audit of roads in the state.
Delhi Integrated Multi Modal Transit System (DIMTS) Ltd in consortium with Transport Research and Injury Prevention Program (TRIPP), IIT Delhi will conduct an “Audit of Implementation of Instructions issued by Supreme Court Committee on road safety in Odisha”.
Following the guidelines of the Supreme Court Committee on Road Safety (SCCoRS), the audit team will conduct the assessment in three states including Odisha.
The team will verify and collect various information related to the audit and the study. They will visit different parts of the state and interact with officials to collect documents and data related to road safety in addition to primary and secondary information from the field.
The audit team will also visit four cities – Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Behrampur and Rourkela – which have reported maximum number of road accidents despite various corrective measures.
After the SCCoRS Secretary wrote to Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mahapatra to assist the teams in carrying out the audit, the state government asked the secretaries of five departments, the DG of Police, ADG of Crime Branch, Transportation Commissioner, State Crime Records Bureau and NHAI Chief Executive Officer to provide data and request officials to be ready.
The SCCoRS Chairman in a recent discussion with the Chief Secretary and senior officers had expressed concern over the rising death toll in the state.
There has been a steady increase in the number of deaths from 3,931 in 2014 to 5,081 in 2021, an increase of approximately 29% (pc) over the period.
The president pointed out that the violation of the MV law is a serious problem that must be dealt with as a matter of priority, otherwise it will lead to serious accidents.
There must be pressure on the general public that if someone violates the provisions of the MV Act, they are dealt with strictly and with heavy hands by enforcement agencies, he observed.
Meanwhile, the state government has appointed Co-Commissioner for Transport (Road Safety) Sanjay Kumar Biswal as the nodal officer to facilitate and connect the consultant team with state department officials.