Monday, January 21, 2013

The letter of the law

If you have travelled by taxis in Kolkata, an often alarming experience in itself, you must have noticed the seat belts the drivers use. They are extremely loose contraptions which are usually slipped over the driver's shoulder when he's approaching a manned crossroad. I doubt that they would have any protective role whatsoever in case of a collision. It really makes me sad and frustrated.

As do cities where helmets are not compulsory for two-wheeler riders. While we lived in Kerala, every time helmets were made compulsory, some smart person would get a stay order against the ordinance, and the status quo of helmetless travel and the proportionate number of head injuries and fatalities would be maintained. Even if those cities are hot and humid, making helmets uncomfortable to wear, the skull is as prone to injury as it is in more salubrious climates.

We need, as a nation, to value and respect the life and well being of each and every one of our citizens. This means having zero tolerance for anything that can compromise their safety. Merely observing the letter of the law is not enough- it is the spirit that has to be our guide, and that spirit means RESPECT.


AA_Mom said...

Very well said. I agree with you whole heartedly. Life is considered very cheap here.

Banno said...

The problem is that we don't respect our own lives. Though the law makes it mandatory, we don't wear helmets, or wear seat belts, and revel in doing something 'free'. The list is endless, from marriages, dowry, superstition, etc, etc. I don't think it's the law, it's us.

dipali said...

@AA_Mom: Unfortunately so:(
@Banno: Sadly, it most certainly is us. Many of our countrymen act like entitled, spoilt brats much of the time:(

Thinking Cramps said...

Rightly observed! I completely agree with you, Dipali. Flouting a rule that's meant to save our own lives is ridiculous! I can't understand this mindset.

dipali said...

@Thinking Cramps: Me neither:(