The government has made it mandatory for two-wheeler manufacturers to supply a helmet with every vehicle sold.
According to a notification put on the gazette on September 16, all two-wheeler manufacturers should supply a protective headgear (helmet) conforming to the specifications prescribed by the Bureau of Indian Standards at the point of sale.
The move, which comes despite opposition from the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers, will take effect in six months.
The final notification follows a draft notification issued by the ministry of shipping, road transport and highways on March 15. The notification, which comes as an amendment to the Central Motor Vehicles Rules 1989 (CMVR), also opens up the 6.5 million two-wheeler market for helmet manufacturers.
An estimated 27 helmet manufacturers are expected to benefit with the move to make only the BIS-approved helmets acceptable.
Sources, however, say over 2,000 helmet manufacturers do not conform to the BIS standards. Though the new rule makes the sale of helmets with two-wheelers mandatory, it will not ensure the use of the same across the country. Use of helmets is mandatory only in Delhi, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Chandigarh.In most parts of the country, it is yet to be made compulsory. Officials said the draft notification was circulated among all state governments and no state had raised any objections to the proposed change.