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India asks Amazon to stop selling devices with seatbelt alarm blockers as part of road safety


By Reuters IST (Released)

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Although the sale of the metal clips is not illegal, these devices and wider road safety issues have come under greater scrutiny following the death of Indian tycoon Cyrus Mistry in a car crash over the weekend .

The Indian government has asked online retail giant Amazon to stop selling devices designed to disable car seat belt alarms, Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari told Reuters, citing potential risks to the security.

Although the sale of the metal clips is not illegal, these devices and wider road safety issues have come under greater scrutiny following the death of Indian tycoon Cyrus Mistry in a car crash over the weekend .

Local media reported that Mistry was not wearing a seatbelt, reigniting the debate over road safety in the world’s fourth-largest car market.

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In an interview in which Gadkari discussed the safety measures planned, the minister said that the metal clips available on Amazon are inserted into the seat belt slots to bypass the alarm that usually continues to ring when the seat belts fail. are not used while a car is being driven.

“People are buying clips from Amazon to avoid wearing seat belts. We sent a notice to Amazon to stop (selling them),” Gadkari said.

Amazon did not immediately respond to a mail for comment.

Gadkari said vehicle crashes killed around 150,000 people in India in 2021. The World Bank said last year that India had one fatality on its roads every four minutes.

India also plans to make seat belt alarms mandatory for the rear seats, not just the driver and front passenger seats, Gadkari said.

On Wednesday, Amazon India’s website offered several listings of small metal clips described as products that can “eliminate” seat belt alarms on car variants and models. The devices were priced from 249 rupees (3.12 USD).

(1 USD = 79.8970 Indian rupees)

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