In order to augment road safety in the country, the Government of India has released guidelines to protect good Samaritans who come forward to help road accident victims.
The guidelines were issued by the Supreme Court of India, based on a petition filed by SaveLIFE Foundation, a Delhi-based independent, non-profit organisation focused on improving road safety.
As per the guidelines, the disclosure of personal information of those who bring an injured person to the hospital has been made voluntary. Moreover, they shall not be made accountable for any civil or criminal liability, and any official who attempts to intimidate the person shall face departmental action. Similarly, lack of response from a doctor, who is expected to provide care during an emergency shall also necessitate disciplinary action. Several other provisions to support good Samaritans can be found here.
Piyush Tewari, founder and CEO of SaveLIFE Foundation, said, “We welcome the guidelines issued by the Government. According to Government data, almost 50 per cent of road crash victims die of treatable injuries in the country. So this step will enable faster care to injured victims.”
Tewari further added that the onus was on the State Government to implement these guidelines. “Our next challenge is to ensure wide dissemination of these guidelines to instill confidence in the public so they can assist those injured without fear of harassment or intimidation. We also need to keep pushing for a Good Samaritan Act so that these guidelines can be given the force of the law,” he said.
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