Tuesday, 7 August 2018

PIL on Road Safety

A PIL “seeking guidelines for improving road safety” was filed by S. Rajaseekaran, Chairman & Head of Orthopedic Department, Ganga Hospital, Coimbatore.

While considering the PIL, bench of Justice Madan B. Lokur and Justice Deepak Gupta issued directions on the basis of the decisions taken by the Supreme Court Committee on Road Safety, headed by former SC judge Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan. The following is the order:

According to the bench as on March, 2018, it was recorded that there are about 180 million vehicles plying on the road and only about 60 million vehicles have the mandatory third party cover, which meant that 66% of the vehicles were playing without third party insurance.

The Committee had detailed discussions with IRDA, General Insurance Council, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance, Government of India. On the basis of the meeting, the Committee took the following decisions:-
1.    It shall be mandatory for all General Insurance Companies to issue a three year third party insurance cover for new cars and five year third party insurance cover for new two wheelers as a separate product or as part of a comprehensive insurance product. IRDA should issue instructions accordingly to all General Insurance Companies.
2.    The GIC and IRDA should ensure that the legacy insurance data is also shared with MoRTH as soon as possible for its integration with Vahan data.
3.    IRDA should ensure that all General Insurers follow its directions dated 01.01.2018 advising them to make available the third party insurance cover to all proposers on online channels; liaise with police authorities to facilitate issue and renewal of third party insurance cover and ensure its easy availability.
The Supreme Court passed an order stating: “We make it clear that the third party insurance cover for new cars should mandatorily be for a period of three years and for two-wheelers, it should mandatorily be for a period of five years. This may be taken and treated as a separate product. We leave it to the insurance companies to deal with comprehensive insurance policies on a separate footing and it would be at the option of the owner of the vehicle to decide which policy should be taken except that the third party insurance is mandatory. The decision should be implemented from 1st September, 2018 on the policies sold”.

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