In a significant move towards enhancing the well-being of long-haul truck and cab drivers, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a new initiative to construct 1,000 modern resting facilities along national highways. The announcement was made at the Bharat Mobility Global Expo 2024 in New Delhi, aligning with the government’s commitment to the ease of living policy.
Addressing the challenges faced by drivers during extended journeys, PM Modi emphasized the importance of proper rest for drivers to remain alert on the road, thereby reducing the risk of accidents. The first phase of the scheme will involve the development of 1,000 modern buildings equipped with facilities such as food services, clean drinking water, toilets, parking, and rest areas on all national highways.
“The government understands the concern of truck drivers and their families,” stated PM Modi. He highlighted that the initiative aims to improve both the ease of living and ease of traveling for truck and taxi drivers, contributing to their overall health and safety on the roads.
According to a report from the NITI Aayog, trucks currently carry 70% of India’s domestic freight demand. As road freight travel continues to grow, the number of trucks is projected to increase from 4 million in 2022 to approximately 17 million by 2050, as per the report titled ‘Transforming Trucking in India.’
The importance of adequate rest for long-haul truck drivers was emphasized by the Prime Minister, acknowledging that sleep deprivation is a significant factor contributing to road accidents.
Speaking at the Bharat Mobility Global Expo, PM Modi highlighted the transformative role of the mobility sector in India’s economic growth. He emphasized that as the Indian economy expands rapidly, the country is on track to become the third-largest economy globally during his government’s third term.
PM Modi also noted the rise of a neo-middle class in India, with approximately 250 million people lifted out of poverty in the last decade. This emerging middle class is expected to drive growth in the mobility sector, with transportation becoming a primary requirement for those breaking out of poverty.
The Prime Minister outlined key developments in the electric vehicle (EV) sector, highlighting the government’s commitment to the National Electric Mobility Mission. He mentioned a ₹10,000 crore investment to stimulate demand for electric vehicles and the success of the FAME scheme in promoting electric buses in the capital and other cities.
In concluding his address, PM Modi announced a fund allocation of ₹1 lakh crore in the current budget to encourage research and innovation, particularly in the mobility sector. These decisions are anticipated to create new opportunities and address challenges in the industry, fostering further growth and development.
Sources By Agencies