On the road

With the kind of road accidents taking place in India, it is imperative that the young are told about safe driving as soon as possible. And what better way than organising a contest which will reach out to the masses in a better way? The Maruti Suzuki Autocar Young Driver 2013 is a nationwide hunt for India’s safest driver. In its fifth edition, the auto biggie wants to create awareness about safe driving amongst the youngsters.  Mayank Pareek, COO (Marketing & Sales), Maruti Suzuki India speaks to The Punekar about their initiative which will award a brand new Alto 800 to the winner.
What made Maruti Suzuki start this initiative?
We are a firm believer in propagating safe driving as a cause. We believe that Maruti Young Driver is a brilliant way to encourage the youth to drive safely. Born out of this commitment, we decided to create a property that the youth would feel like engaging in while at the same time learn about safety measures. The winner becomes the face of safe driving. He/she will win a new car and be featured across media as the face of safety.
Why such an initiative just among the young?
There have been a lot of incidents of rash driving especially amongst the youth. A lot of youngsters drive without a license and take traffic rules very lightly. We felt that this initiative would be a major step to ensure that they are educated about road safety and are encouraged to follow the same.
With the fifth edition on, how was the response been so far?
In the previous editions, we have received over one lakh registrations and people have showed enthusiasm in participating. This year, we intend to create a lot of noise around it. We want more youth to participate in this event.
Do you feel you made you point, since its inception?
Road safety has always been our main concern and through the previous editions we have tried to increase the number of safe drivers in the country. However, with additional Below The Line (BTL) activities and media channels, we will promote this initiative aggressively to make the point.
How is the company making sure safe driving values are instilled among the buyers?
Maruti is dedicated to promoting the culture of safe driving through communication programmes, IDTRs (Institute of Driving Training & Research) and Maruti Driving School MDSs.. In fact, the Maruti Driving schools are the state of the art driving schools in the country. They were the first to introduce advanced driving training simulator for better judgment and concept of route maps for holistic on-road practice.
As an automobile giant, the one message about safe driving for everyone?
Driving your car is an amazing experience but, always follow traffic rules and guidelines to ensure safety for yourself as well as others.