Deputy commissioner of police (traffic), Nagpur, C K Mina issued a notification making helmets compulsory for traffic police starting 8th January 2013. Mina said, ''It is compulsory. It is not optional.'' Though, Mina also stated that it will take around a weeks time for it to be properly functional.
This measure has been initiated by Mina after one of the traffic department constable Harish Badhiye was seriously injured in a road accident. These traffic constables are mostly on roads to control the traffic, hence prone to accidents. ''Traffic constables are most exposed to traffic in the city,'' said Mina.
Mina maintains that they do not want to publicise the initiative, but would want to see this step as an example for motor-cyclists in Kanpur. ''Even if 25 per cent of the motor-cyclists start wearing helmet after this initiative, then I would consider it to be a great success.''
Nagpur has witnessed a number of road accidents, resulting in serious injuries as well as a number of deaths. 130 people are said to have died in road accidents involving motor-cycles in the city. One also needs to understand that under section 129 and 177 of the Motor Vehicles Act 1988, not wearing helmets is a punishable offence. Had this rule been followed strictly, the number of two- wheelers accidents on road could have come down.
However, one also needs to understand the various problems that the traffic police department faces as well, before pointing fingers solely across towards them. Mina said,''At the end of the day, traffic police has got a limited capacity – manpower issues and pressure groups as well.''