March 23, 2023

The (MoRTH) has asked states to expedite work on the tracking system, which was introduced for the safety of women and children under the Nirbhaya scheme, minutes of the annual meeting of the Transport Development Council (TDC) revealed.

Launched in January 2020, the vehicle location tracking (VLT) and emergency button policy for was rolled out after several years of delay. Two years and eight months later, Memoranda of Understanding have been signed with 30 of 37 states and Union Territories, and funds have been dispersed to them, a MoRTH official said in the meeting.

“The committee is dismayed to note the declining trend of budgetary allocation under the ‘Scheme on Women Safety’ in the last five years and desires to be apprised of the reasons behind the underutilisation of funds,” the parliamentary standing committee on transport told MoRTH in June.

“From the expenditure details furnished by the ministry, the committee notes that only three states have been provided funds under this scheme, besides the expenditure incurred under ‘development, customisation, deployment and management of state-wise vehicle tracking platform’,” the committee had further said.

States were also told to revisit speed limits in urban and semi-urban road stretches to promote seamless movement of . Union minister Nitin Gadkari had earlier said speed limits on many state roads and highways are outdated since they were designed for narrower roads. With the advent of expressways and better roads, relaxed speed limits are needed to reduce the cost of logistics, he’d said.

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