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'Rash drivers involved in deaths go free on bail'

Posted on Apr 22 2014 | IANS

Gurgaon, April 22 : The law fails to deter rash drivers as they are booked under bailable offences and go free on bail of up to Rs.50,000. It also happened after a cardiologist and his nursery-going daughter were crushed by a speeding bus here, lawyers said Tuesday.

Pankaj Gupta, 45, and his five-year-old daughter Lineshiya were run over by a city bus Monday while they were waiting for the child's school bus.

Resident of Rail Vihar apartments in Sector 47, Gupta was working at the Medanta Medicity Hospital here as cardiologist, while Lineshiya was a nursery class student at the Delhi Public School here.

"It took just a few minutes to destroy the life of a family and the accused driver, Harish Singh, was out on bail even before the post-mortem examination," said Vikas Kumar Shah, a software engineer and witness and complainant in the accident case. Shah too is a resident of Rail Vihar.

Gupta's wife Jyoti Tuesday shifted with her eight-month-old daughter to Delhi's Pitampura area where her in-laws live.

Harish Singh, 32, a resident of Haryana's Jhajjar, was booked for rash driving that caused the two deaths and damage to public property.

However, the crime is bailable and the maximum punishment he can get is two years in prison.

Harish Singh was Monday presented before the court of Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Kuwad Guglani, who granted him bail.

"Several changes are needed in laws related to road rage and especially the Motor Vehicles Act. The fact is that people are not scared of flouting laws," a lawyer here said.

Lawyer Archana Chauhan said Section 304 can also be imposed in accident cases but is not because more evidence and criminal intent is required to prove the charge under this stringent section.

Section 304-A of the Indian Penal Code says whoever causes death by rash or negligent act not amounting to culpable homicide shall be punished with imprisonment up to two years or a fine or both.

K.K. Yadav, a resident of Wazirabad here, said his son, a cousin and a friend were "mowed down by a Delhi Police crane" near IFFCO Chowk in June 2007 while they were standing on a footpath.

"Their death changed the lives of three families, but nothing happened to the driver," he said.

A man from Bihar was arrested but was granted bail. Police say the accused is now missing and on the run.

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