N. Nithyanandam, who will present a project at the UN Youth Assembly in New York, on the need to acknowledge the contribution of drivers

The drivers’ seat is an important one, says U.N. volunteer N. Nithyanandam from Coimbatore. He is attending the Youth Assembly at the United Nations in New York on February 5 and 6, 2014. If you recollect, he had attended the 12th Youth Assembly too where he spoke on the need to provide children skill-based education and raise them as global citizens who respect the environment.

The U.N Volunteers who attend this assembly have to present a project on something significant they want to share with the world. So, this time around, Nithyanandam is going there with a project to create awareness about drivers. He is vehement about the need to have an International Drivers’ Day. He says, “From a person who rides a two-wheeler to a pilot of an aircraft, they have to be acknowledged. Let us celebrate the driver.”

In Nithyanandam’s mind just acknowledging the role of drivers will save lives. After natural disasters, it is vehicle accidents that take lives in such large volume, he says. “Give the drivers a sense of self worth and self esteem and the number of accidents will come down.” Lorry drivers, car drivers, bus drivers, auto drivers, locomotive drivers, pilots…They are there in huge numbers. If they are made to feel like a part of the system and not treated like they are invisible, they will rise to the occasion.” From the ordinary man-on-the-street to royalty and Corporate moguls, so many lives are lost in accidents. Nithyanandam says, not entirely jokingly, that after God it is the drivers who take more lives! A driver’s state of mind can decide the fate of his passengers. “Just as a doctor is dedicated and is highly conscious of his responsibility to his patient, a driver should feel he is responsible to his passengers too. We look on doctors with such respect and awe. But drivers, largely, are looked upon with indifference. ‘Oh, he is just a driver’ is the attitude most of us have.”

Nithyanandam gratefully acknowledges the fact that last year after they came to know about his U.N trip, thousands of students in the city responded to his appeal for environmental work. He says it is the youth who can bring about change. “I barely scraped through school and today I am attending seminars in the U.N. Imagine how much more the educated youth can do,” he says. He hopes that his project about observing International Drivers’ Day will also touch a chord with them and will make the roads, the waters and the skies safer.

To know more about Nithyanandam’s project call 9566757074.