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Nitin Gadkari approves draft for making 6 airbags mandatory in 8 seater vehicles!

There's a small caveat though- it's only for vehicles which carry 8 or more passengers at a time.

Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Road Transport and Highways has just put out a series of tweets in which he confirms to all the fact that he is interested in taking road safety in India seriously. It underlines the need for a minimum of 6 airbags in all cars carrying 8 passengers or more.

Considering how it is now already the norm for mass-mover cars to have at least two airbags (driver and passenger), Gadkari highlighted via his tweets the addition of laws to make 4 more airbags compulsory (which makes 6 in total), with two side/side torso airbags for the front passengers, and two further curtain airbags covering the rest of the passengers.

Maruti Alto GlobalNCAP crash test
Unsafe cars could soon become a thing of the past on Indian roads.

Gadkari said that this is in an effort to ensure the safety of passengers, and went further by saying that such measures would improve the safety situation across all segments, irrespective of the cost or variant of the vehicle. The movement has been labelled as #SadakSurakshaJeevanRaksha, and is another step forward in progressing towards #SaferCarsForIndia. Here are all his tweets in chronological order:

Now, while it is assumed that every individual airbag costs in the ballpark of Rs 5000-15000 to fit, which when multiplied by 6 gives a median additional cost of Rs 40000-45000 extra on the car, it would be good to see carmakers other than Mahindra and Tata trying to offer competitively priced cars. While Mahindra and Tata had made it clear since beginning that their intention was on safety and the overall build quality of the car, they have always been under the scanner for lacking fit, finish and good quality interiors. Now that India is getting more and more stringent safety norms (which is great), it’d be interesting to see Maruti, Hyundai and Kia’s offerings at similar price levels after making sure they offer safe cars. Also, no more of wannabe 8-seater vehicles as that’d require a minimum of 6-airbags to be complied with.

Regardless of the future consequences for carmakers, it is incredibly promising to finally see a push for safety in India, and the cars sold in India becoming safer. Car crashes are a regular occurrence on Indian roads and more often than not Indian roads and their safety (or lack thereof) have become a laughing stock on the public stage, so it’s good to see some measures finally being taken. It took a while, but we’re finally en route to becoming a safer nation for motor vehicle owners!

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Sahil

Love sleeping and videogames, but F1 is life! I'm addicted to F1 and it's happenings, and love open-wheel motorsport! Feel free to check out any of my articles- I try my best to write without an element of bias, so you as the reader can form your own opinion! :)

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