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A Member of Parliament (MP) from Assam is in the news for making a statement that contradicts a developing state. Pallab Lochan Das, a BJP MP from Tezpur Assam said that good roads lead to more accidents. The comment has garnered a lot of criticism from netizens.
According to Pallab Lochan Das, bad roads keep the speed of vehicles under check while good roads encourage motorists to drive fast. He was quoted as saying, "Dilapidated condition of roads forces the youths to drive their vehicles slowly, which has reduced the number of road accidents in the state. Good roads automatically lead to more acceleration and this, in turn, leads to more accidents."
India is one of the largest countries in the world in terms of the size of the road network. With a road network of 43.20 lakh kilometres, it has the second largest road network in the world. However, most of these roads are still in a horrible condition, or has not yet been developed.
A large percentage of these roads are in rural areas and are still made of mud, but these are not the real danger. The real danger comes in the form of developed roads that have deteriorated over a period of time.
One deep pothole on a developed road can cause fatal accidents. On Indian roads though, such potholes are found in abundance. It has been a struggle for citizens to get their local development authority to develop roads fully.
However, these efforts have been futile most of the time thanks to a few challenges. One of the main challenges is the mentality and attitude of authorities and politicians in-charge of development. In this case, Pallab Lochan Das is clearly thinking about good rads causing more accidents.
Just a few months ago, Karnataka's Deputy Chief Minister Govind Karjol too made a similar statement. But, does it make any sense whatsoever? To an extent, yes! Only to the extent of bad roads slowing down traffic.
However, there is no truth to the statement that it reduces accidents. In-fact, bad roads cause more accidents. It is very easy to lose control of a vehicle if it hits a pothole or a patch with mud or gravel.
The danger is multiplied manifold when a motorcycle or scooter is taken into consideration. Good roads allow for better and faster transportation and this solves a lot of problems. When the roads are good, it is easier to brake hard without losing control.
In most cases, ABS too doesn't work as effectively when braking hard on bad roads. If the leaders really want to reduce accidents, they should look at increasing fines for speeding, even on good roads and enforce traffic rules strictly.
It has to be noted that Assam is one of the few states in the country that has taken the new Motor Vehicle Act pretty seriously and is following the new revised fine without reducing them. In such a case, the number of violations and therefore the number of accidents should come down automatically.
Thoughts On BJP MP In Assam Stating That Bad Roads Reduce Accidents
Well, politicians in our country typically give a few answers that does not even make sense. Earlier, it would be taken as the gospel truth, but now in the modern world, everything said by them has to be taken with a pinch of salt.