Lack of CCTV cameras at the right spot and a team of policemen sleeping on the job, meant the cyclist who was run over on Friday by a rampaging BEST bus at Wadala, didn’t get help in time. Nor have any arrests been made so far since no one noted the number plate of the bus.
On Friday around 7 pm the bus (Route 88) hit the cyclist on the New Uphill Link Road in Wadala. Even as the man lay writhing in a pool of blood, the bus driver escaped by driving away from the spot. The main witness to the crime, an MMRDA security guard supervising the ongoing monorail construction at the spot, claimed he was illiterate and could not note down the number plate of the bus.
The man apparently lay on the road for at least 30 minutes before locals rushed him to the hospital where he was declared dead on arrival. Strangely, even though the nearest police station at Antop Hill is just a stone’s throw away, there were no police personnel at the spot during or after the incident. The road in question is a narrow stretch with two-way traffic, with several diversions caused by the ongoing monorail construction work.
Angry residents of the area later took out a protest rally to the Matunga Traffic Police station to demand greater safety measures and police presence at the spot. About 150 residents who marched to the police station alleged that traffic rules were rampantly ignored by buses and cars near Dosti Acres.
They also demanded that the MMRDA (which is leading the monorail work) employ only educated security guards. Ashok Singh, a resident of that area, said, “We have demanded greater safety measures for pedestrians. The police control room was informed about the accident only an hour later.”
When contacted, Sujata Patil, Police Inspector at Matunga PS, said, “Usually there is a traffic constable present near the spot in question. In future we will make sure there is police presence there at all times.”