A Dahisar-based hotelier, a prime witness in the matter, narrated to MiD DAY how the cops left the scene without taking the victim to a hospital, and then there was a nearly two-hour dispute between police stations over who would take the case.
“I stood for almost two hours at the spot and another three hours at the police station and ensured that a case was registered,” said Rakesh Shetty (26).
According to Shetty, the body was lying at the spot, while there was a squabble between Borivili, MHB and Kasturba police stations over jurisdiction.
Shetty said, “I noticed a Fiat Palio being chased by another four-wheeler car with a yellow beacon. I found the event curious, and decided to follow the vehicles.” He added that the police car managed to catch up with the car once, but the latter managed to get away.
“At Sudhir Phadke Bridge the police managed to cut off the bootleggers. But the Fiat banged against the railing on the left side, then turned right and rammed onto the divider, killing a pedestrian in the process. I saw two people fleeing from the Fiat, leaving the vehicle. The pedestrian was lying under; the vehicle had passed over his head. Most importantly, the police car too had left the scene,” Shetty said.
Shetty then immediately called the Mumbai police control. Later which followed was clear callousness of Mumbai cops.
Shetty said, “At 4.10 am I called control room, but even 20 minutes later no one came to the spot. I called the MHB police station, but still no one arrived. I took the station officer’s number and called him several times, but he did not answer.”
An hour later cops started arriving from the three police stations, who had an argument over jurisdiction. Meanwhile, the body was lying on the road for nearly two hours. Finally, the senior inspector of MHB police station decided that he would take the case.
Shetty then met additional commissioner of police Sunil Paraskar, who has initiated an inquiry into the matter. PSI Sandesh Palande of MHB police station said, “We have registered a case under sections 279 (rash driving or riding on a public way), 304 (A) (causing death by negligence) of IPC and 134 of The Motor Vehicles Act. We are going through CCTV footage to find out about the vehicle that was chasing the Fiat.”
He added, “We have recovered 22 tyre tubes each containing 50 litres of alcohol from the bootleggers’ car.”