As many families were torn apart by Covid-19; unfortunately, even more people die in road accidents every year in India. Who follows road signs when the road is empty or when you have a bike of 2458CC right! After all, we have NFS dreams. Now, sadly India doesn’t even have proper roads for testing such bikes or cars, whatever roads they have that’s not even authentic so riding them on almost even half-speed could possibly do a lot of damage. As per a report by Times Drive Desk, there are 53 crashes that happen per hour all over the country. India wins the race in road accidents. As per the 2016 report, the cost estimation for serious injury is ₹12.9 lakh crore which is 7.5% of India’s GDP.
What happens when you see someone injured on the road, run towards them or just be a watcher? It’s up to you, I am not judging but every three out of four people really want to help, but due to harassment by police afterwards, they avoid giving a hand. Not only police harassment but also other formalities such as hospital forms, detained in hospital for some information, etc. Hence the government thought to introduce the Good Samaritan law to protect the good-willed person from such chaos. A Samaritan is a good person who in good faith acted to save an injured person in a road accident. Usually, the person who helps faces a lot of trouble in terms of formality by the hospital, police etc. To save the person from such harassment, the government came up with the good Samaritan law.
How it came in India:
India is a country that has very high accident rates. And when the accident rate is high then, the Samaritan ratio is also high for which the government is forced to make laws to protect the goodwill of people. When the same was absent people are hesitant to help. In the past decade, over 13 lakhs of cases of road accidents came and around 50 lakhs of people were saved from the injuries.  In India, there are many areas which crave the attention of law but sadly we still live with the 1980s laws which no longer is as much help as it should be. Moreover, the new laws don’t protect people as much they should do. Hence, the motion started in the year 2012, when a PIL was filed in Apex Court for safeguarding the goodwill people from harassment. The main reason to bring this law is the ratio of accidents which happened every year. As per the doctors, 50% of death happens due to the lack of timely medical attention. The attention is not provided because the people are scared of the after procedures by the police and the hospitals.
The year 2012 was the start of change. SaveLIFE Foundation filed a PIL asking the hon’ble supreme court protection of good Samaritan. Hence, on 30th March 2016, the court gave guidelines to the govt to make laws for it.
Yes, every judgement brings changes in society. And this judgement brought law that provides the following facilities to the Good Samaritan:
- There would be no criminal or civil charges on the Good Samaritan if there is death or injury to the victim
- There can be no pressure on the person to reveal their identity who informed the police or emergency services
- Personal details may include everything which can reveal your identity including MLC
(Medical Legal Case) Form.
- In case that happens, the official will face disciplinary actions against him.
- The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare declared that the Good Samaritan is not liable for the treatment which will be provided to the victim.
- Moreover, the victims cannot be denied treatment.
- In case, such happens there would be actions on the doctors in emergency for ‘professional misconduct.
- In the court, the Good Samaritan can be witnessed but cannot be forced to be one.
- In there has to be an examination of the witness then only under sec 284: Examination through commission and sec 296: evidence through an affidavit of CrPC.
- Video Conferencing can be done.
Why become a Good Samaritan?
The world needs kindness. As per WHO, over 70,000 lives can be instantly saved if nearby people come forward. The absence of emergency medical services leads to most deaths. You never know what you did until you have been there yourself. People need to be saved, the world needs heroes. We all can be. Not everyone is with a cape. A person laying on the road injured is a loved one to someone. Moreover, it’s a life. It matters. Now one doesn’t even have to suffer so many harassments by police for helping someone then why not?
 Times Drive Desk, With 53 road crashes per hour, road accidents in India continue to be highest in world, Times Now (Feb 16, 2021), https://www.timesnownews.com/auto/features/article/with-53-road-crashes-per-hour-road-accidents-in-india-continue-to-be-highest-in-world/720831
Times Drive Desk, With 53 road crashes per hour, road accidents in India continue to be highest in world, Times Now (Feb 16, 2021), https://www.timesnownews.com/auto/features/article/with-53-road-crashes-per-hour-road-accidents-in-india-continue-to-be-highest-in-world/720831