Safety First: Govt makes dual airbags mandatory for all passenger cars in India
In a bid to promote passenger safety in cars, the Indian government has announced the mandatory provision of dual airbags (front row) in all cars manufactured and sold in India.
The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways made the announcement of the latest rule in a gazette notification. As per the rule, all the new passenger cars in India will have to come with dual front airbags as standard fitment. The rule will be applicable for all cars manufactured in the Indian market starting from April 1, 2021. At the same time, the deadline is August 31, 2021, for the existing vehicles.
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"It has been mandated that the vehicles manufactured on and after the 1st Day of April, 2021, in the case of new models, and 31st day of August, 2021, in the case of existing models, shall be fitted with airbag for the person occupying the front seat, other than the driver," tweeted The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways.
As per the latest notification issued by the transport ministry, the new mandate is also based on the suggestions of the Supreme Court Committee on road safety.
The notification adds that the airbags will need to meet the AIS 145 standard under the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) specifications.
Previously, a senior government official told Hindustan Times' sister publication Mint that the transport ministry is discussing the standard safety measures under the cars sold in India. “We came to the conclusion that airbags for co-passenger on the front seat should also kick in," the official said. (more details here)
Goes without saying, while the new mandate will surely promote safety in Indian cars, this will also raise prices of the base variants of entry-level cars which currently only feature a single airbag for the driver.