A pothole has turned killer again late Thursday night.
But traffic police arrested him!
The techie riding his two-wheeler with his software engineer wife sitting pillion, failed to negotiate a huge pothole, skidded, and fell. His 25-year-old wife Stuti Pandey Tripathi slammed her head on the road. She died an hour later. The couple was returning home after celebrating the festival as the rider’s attempt to avoid a pothole on the Devarabeesanahalli flyover caused the bike to skid.
However, although it is clear that the pothole was the killer in this case – as in many other cases before this – they do not fall under the jurisdiction of the traffic police, who, going by the book, have registered a case against Stuti’s grieving husband, Om Prakash Tripathi, for causing her death due to negligent riding!
The pothole covered flyover has a death-trap reputation
pothole death india
The traffic police found that Tripathi was not under the influence of alcohol. Interestingly, the Devarabeesanahalli flyover on Outer Ring Road has a notorious reputation for being a death-trap. A little over a year ago – on September 3, 2014 – an accident left cab driver Shivu and his passenger, a techie named Ravindran dead.
The latter’s wife was seriously injured. The speeding vehicle had rammed into the central median between the base of the flyover and the service road. However, in recording a first of its kind case, the traffic police booked two BDA engineers for the deaths as it was their alleged negligence in failing to install adequate signs and reflectors that was understood to have led to the mishap.
Pothole deaths are common here
pothole lethal bangalore
Even three weeks ago, the death of nine-year-old Likith Gowda and his mother Sunitha Gowda, while trying to avoid a gaping pothole on Tumkur Road, saw the traffic police booking a case against the Navayuga engineer-in-charge of Tumkur Road for poor maintenance of the national highway.
While National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), Bangalore Development Authority (BDA), Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), and Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) engineers have been held accountable for past accidents said to have been caused due to poor maintenance by the respective authorities, Tripathi finds himself not just bereaved for the loss of his wife, but also booked for her death.
“It was the rider’s negligence…” says police commissioner
Initially, a case of unnatural death was registered by the Old Airport Road traffic police. But by Friday night, they received instructions from additional commissioner of police (traffic) MA Saleem to take up a case of death due to negligence against the rider – Stuti’s husband. “I have instructed my officers to take up a case under section 304A as it was the rider’s negligence which led to the accident. As for the pothole, I have conveyed clear instructions for my men to examine and prepare a comprehensive report about how dangerous it is; and whether or not they had sent any letters or notices to the BDA to repair that stretch of the road in the recent past,” Saleem told Mirror.
A detailed examination and report of the pothole in question is being prepared by the traffic police to be submitted to the top brass, based on which a decision will be taken whether or not the BDA engineer in-charge would also be booked for Stuti’s death.
Is lack of coordination to blame for these deaths?
From cavernous potholes and craters to sudden depressions, badly-paved stretches to almost entirely unnavigable roads, Bengaluru has them all. The blame-game between the city’s traffic police and various civic bodies like the BBMP, BDA, and NHAI continues as more and more lives are lost due to bad roads and officials’ apathy; or due to rash and negligent driving by careless motorists.
Previous incidents in which potholes killed motorists in Banglaore
* August 23, 2015: Nine-year-old Likith Gowda and his mother, Sunitha, died when the latter swerved her two-wheeler to avoid a huge pothole near SRS Circle on Tumkur Road and the duo was knocked down by a speeding bus from behind.
* April 27, 2015: 13-year-old Shama Anjum and her one-year-old sister Ayam died when their mother attempted to manoeuvre the two-wheeler she was riding with them pillion around a large pothole on OTC Road near Ulsoorgate police station.
* Dec 5, 2014: Two-and-a-half-year-old Dhanushree was crushed to death by a lorry on Hoodi main road when her uncle hit a pothole and lost control of the two-wheeler he was riding, resulting in the lorry ramming into them from behind and running over the child.
* July 23, 2013: Lakshmidevi, a native of Ananthpur district in Andhra Pradesh, died after being knocked down by a Tamil Nadu-bound bus on SJP Road near Hudson Circle when the driver of the bus tried to skirt a huge pothole and ran over the victim as she was crossing the road.
* Mar 14, 2012: 51-year old Jayan was run over by a speeding truck and killed after falling from his bike when he encountered a pothole at Pantharapalya on Mysore Road.
Source= indiatimes September 21, 2015