Sunil Gavaskar on road safety: Driving license given without genuine test

Updated: Oct 18, 2019, 08:30 IST | Harit N Joshi | Mumbai

The former India opener-turned-commentator urged the road transport authorities to look into the lenient manner in which licenses are issued in India

Sunil Gavaskar and Sachin Tendulkar at the event in Lower Parel
Sunil Gavaskar and Sachin Tendulkar at the event in Lower Parel

Indian batsman Sunil Gavaskar spoke his heart out on violations of driving rules while launching the Road Safety World Series at St Regis, Lower Patel yesterday.

Gavaskar is the commissioner of the T20 tournament that has legendary cricketers like Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehmat from India, Brian Lara (West Indies), Jonty Rhodes from South Africa, T Dilshan (Sri Lanka) and Brett Lee representing Australia.

Gavaskar highlighted the trauma the accident victim's family has to go through. "This is something that I am deeply concerned about. We in India tend to ignore how many lives are lost in road accidents. The rise in accidents is invariably done by professionals like car bus drivers, truck drivers or your personal drivers. They are the ones causing these accidents. And of course the two-wheelers. Wherever they can find a way, they will go," said Gavaskar.

The former India opener-turned-commentator urged the road transport authorities to look into the lenient manner in which licenses are issued in India. "I would like to take up the issue of licenses. The way the driving licenses are given without any genuine test. When I got my license after I came back from the West Indies tour (in 1971), I used to struggle to reverse and park the car. But the driving instructor said it doesn't matter. I will give you a license if you drive straight. So, that's how I got my license. Sometimes these types of leniences are the cause of accidents," said Gavaskar.

"The kind of cars we have now and the kind of speed these cars can generate, and if the driver cannot understand signs, you are giving him an AK-47. The person can actually maul down people.
"We had a situation of hefty fines recently, but unless we have zero-tolerance these accidents will keep happening.

"If we all take it very seriously and not just pay lip service, we will be able to make a huge difference," he said.

The T20 tournament (from February 4 to 16) will be played across at Wankhede Stadium, DY Patil Stadium and Maharashtra Cricket Association's stadium in Pune.

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