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In a significant decision aimed at saving the precious lives of people from road fatalities, the Punjab Cabinet led by Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann on Friday gave nod for constituting Sadak Surakhya Force (SSF) in the state.

ULTRA MODERN FORCE TO COVER 5500 KMS OF STATE AND NATIONAL HIGHWAYS TO SAVE LIVES OF PEOPLE

A decision to this effect was taken in the meeting of the Council of Ministers held here under the chairmanship of the Chief Minister here at the Punjab Civil Secretariat today afternoon.

Disclosing this here today a spokesperson of the Chief Minister’s Office said that the Cabinet gave its consent to launch this force as a plan for road safety for covering 5500 km of state and national highways. The Cabinet opined that Punjab has witnessed a significant increase in traffic and road infrastructure over the past few decades. The state has 72,078 kms long road network including the national and state Highways which constitute 5.64 % (4,025 kms) of the same.

The Cabinet expressed concern that 65% of road fatalities take place on the national and state highways adding that in the year 2021, 4476 lives were lost in 580 road accidents. Most of these fatal accidents take place between 6:00 pm to 12:00 pm, when the presence of police on these roads is minimal. As per the decision of the Cabinet, Highway Patrol Routes have been identified based on the past years’ road accidents trends.

As many as 144 patrolling vehicles, fitted with specialized equipment to check drunken driving and over speeding, will be deployed on these routes, each covering a distance of 30 kilometres. An amount of Rs.30 Crore will be spent on purchase of vehicles and the equipment installed in them. Around 5000 Police personnel will be deployed in Sadak Suraksha Force out of which around 1200–1500 police personnel will be immediately provided out of the newly recruited Police personnel.

‘MARTYRS MEMORIAL’ TO COME UP IN A LEADING PARK OF EVERY DISTRICT

As a mark of respect to the great freedom fighters and national heroes who had laid their lives at the altar of the motherland either during the freedom struggle of country or during any war to preserve its unity, integrity and sovereignty, the Cabinet also gave consent to set up a martyrs memorial in a leading park of every district. This memorial will have the names of the martyrs and great freedom fathers, from that respective district, who had sacrificed their lives during the freedom struggle so that their enormous contribution can be perpetuated to the younger generations. This memorial will further inspire the coming generations for selfless service towards the country and its people.

GIVES CONSENT FOR SETTING UP A “FACILITATION CENTER” AT ARRIVAL HALL OF IGI AIRPORT TO FACILITATE NRIs

In a landmark initiative aimed at facilitating the NRIs landing at the Indira
Gandhi International Airport at New Delhi, the Cabinet also gave approval to set up a “Facilitation Center” at the Arrival Hall of International Terminal. This center will be manned 24×7 and will provide assistance to all the
NRIs and other passengers arriving at the terminal. Efforts will be made to provide suitable sitting arrangement for the passengers or their relatives in the “Facilitation Center”.

The passengers/relatives will be given assistance regarding arrival
flights, connecting flights, taxi services, lost luggage facilities and others at the airport. In case passengers desire, the center will have tie ups with taxi services available at reasonable rates. In addition, it will also have vehicles at its disposal for helping passengers for local movement to Puniab Bhawan and at other places in close vicinity.

GREEN SIGNAL FOR USE OF AI IN FURTHER IMPROVING GOVERNANCE IN THE STATE

The Cabinet also gave nod to use Artificial Intelligence (AI) in further improving the governance in the state. The decision aims at making the state a front runner in the usage of AI in governance and provides better services to the citizens of Punjab. The AI can be helpful in reducing road accident fatalities, checking tax evasion, improving health services, improving citizen interface and others.

A Centre for Emerging Technologies has already been set-up in the Punjab State Governance Society (PeGS) and an MoU has been signed with a NGO to assist the Department in harnessing the power of Al and Machine Learning (ML) in the State Government. It was decided that the nascent Centre for Emerging Technologies will be strengthened with a greater focus on Al and for this purpose, a Project Management Unit (PMU) will be constituted. The PMU will support the Centre for Emerging Technologies in identifying and implementing the deployment of use cases across the relevant Departments.

NOD FOR RECOMMENDING SPECIAL REMISSION OF 45 CONVICTS IN STATE JAILS

In order to commemorate the third phase of ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’, the Cabinet also recommended the special remission of 45 convicts confined in jails across the state on the upcoming Independence Day. After the nod of the Cabinet under Article 163 of the Constitution of India, these special remission cases will be submitted to the Punjab Governor under Article 161 of the Indian Constitution for consideration.

APPROVES ANNUAL ADMINISTRATIVE REPORT OF THE POLICE DEPARTMENT

The Punjab Cabinet also approved the Annual Administrative Report of the Police department for the year 2019.

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