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The minister for road transport and highways, Nitin Gadkari stated recently that autonomous or driverless Cars will not be allowed in India because it will lead to the loss of thousands of jobs.
He said, “No driverless Cars will be allowed in India. The government is not going to promote any technology or policy that will make people jobless.” The transport ministry’s statistics reveal that our country has a shortage of about 2.2 million drivers and the task of driving currently helps employ around 5 million people.
“Cab aggregators like Ola and Uber are making money by using our driving skills. If cab aggregators think they can make more money by introducing technology like driverless cars and render people unemployed, the government is not going to allow it,” he emphasised.
Most manufacturers like Renault and Google, who are currently working on driverless tech, have stated that these cars may not run on Indian roads anytime soon, purely because autonomous driving requires proper infrastructure like lane markings, signage, etc., something that isn’t up to par in our cities.
Autonomous cars have the potential to drastically reduce road accidents and fatalities in India - at least 410 people lose their lives every day in road accidents. A large portion of those are thanks to driver errors, the likes of drunken driving, jumping traffic lights, sudden lane changes, etc. Introducing driverless tech can reduce fatalities by up to 50 percent over the next three years.