Saurashtra University (SU) in Rajkot and the city police on Saturday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to offer vehicular traffic as an elective subject to undergraduate students in order to inculcate traffic sense among them.
SU Registrar Ramesh Parmar and Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Pooja Yadav of Rajkot city police inked the MoU in the presence of SU’s in charge Vice-Chancellor Prof Nilambari Dave, city police commissioner Raju Bhargav and Additional Police Commissioner Vidhi Choudhary.
“This a historic day for Rajkot city police as for the first time in the state, police have signed an MoU with a university on the subject of traffic. We all know that the traffic problem is worsening by the day and every section is affected by it. For police also, it has emerged as a huge challenge. Especially, youth like to experience the thrill of speed but that leads to serious accidents. To address this, an MoU has been signed with Saurashtra University,” Bhargav told mediapersons after the MoU was signed.
He added that the city police personnel and officers of the regional transport office (RTO) will collaborate with SU to teach the subject. “Rajkot city police will give inputs for the syllabus and if need be, our officers will also work as faculty with other resource persons,” Bhargav said.
Prof Dave said the MoU fits in SU’s plans to implement National Education Policy (NEP), 2020. She added that the university will offer traffic rules as an elective subject to undergraduate students of its 238 affiliated colleges in Saurashtra’s Rajkot, Jamnagar, Morbi, Surendranagar and Amreli districts from the next academic session (beginning April 2024) as an optional subject.
“Saurashtra University started implementing NEP from last year. For the first year of BA, Bsc and BCom, we have started offering new courses like value-added courses, character-building courses and Indian knowledge system courses, among others… in continuation of the same, today, we signed this MoU… We will add traffic rules as a value-added course in the basket (of elective subjects) offered to students of second and fourth semesters of our undergraduation programme,” she added.
Prof Dave said the subject will help students learn the rules of the road and in turn make them brand ambassadors of road safety. “…it will be of great help if young students study rules of the road, think deeply about them, become aware of the rules and then become our brand ambassadors and help inculcate traffic sense in the society.”
Parmar said the idea behind the MoU is to formally engage students in traffic awareness and get experts to teach them. “To ease the issue of traffic, we need to engage people and the best way is to catch them young at schools and colleges. Hence, the need to offer traffic rules as an elective subject… If students start following traffic rules, it is possible that it will have a spillover effect on members of their families also,” he added.