After a Congress legislature threatened to protest against his own government for its failure to act against speeding “killer” buses, the Punjab Government on Thursday announced to rein in the buses steering clear of law.
Besides, the state Transport Minister Aruna Chaudhary also announced to conduct refreshing courses for all the drivers, and conductors of the buses running on state’s roads.
“We already have a law to act against the drivers of the buses involved in accidents, we just need to fine-tune it and make it more effective,” said Chaudhary during the ongoing budget session of the Vidhan Sabha.
The Minister’s announcement came after the Congress’ Gidderbaha MLA Raja Amarinder Singh Warring, while raising the issue of people being killed in road accidents involving private buses in the state, threatened to protest against the State Government if it did not act against them.
“Even if we have to protest against my own government, we will...We will not allow people to be crushed on the roads and compromise their lives,” said Warring, while urging the state Transport Minister to make sure that the law is implemented and strong action be taken against the private bus operators causing “frequent accidents” on state’s roads leading to large number of deaths and going scott free.
Pointing that the buses of a particular company were involved in five big accidents causing 11 deaths in the recent past, Warring asked why no action was taken against them.
“There were talks about training the drivers, conductors which never held. There were no rules. Can’t we cancel their permits, cant we stop their buses, cant we register cases against them for killing people...we need to make sure that law is implemented and strong action be taken against them,” demanded Warring while urging the Minister not to shrug off the matter.
“The Cabinet is all-powerful and it can make any law,” said Warring demanding that a law be enacted to act against the erring bus operators. “The law should have a provision to close down such bus companies,” he said.
He pointed that before issuing licenses their credentials or physical fitness is not checked. “If this continues, the trust which people had shown in us will not stay,” he warned.
Aam Aadmi Party MLA and the Leader of Opposition in Vidhan Sabha Harpal Singh Cheema sought an amendment in the existing law to punish the careless and erring drivers.
“Section 304 (of Indian Penal Code regarding culpable homicide not amounting to murder) needs to be changed, by enhancing imprisonment to at least 10 years from the current two years so that such incidents and cases of drunken driving be checked effectively,” he said.