Mumbai hit-and-run case: Mechanic out on a joyride is prime suspect

The owner had given the Scorpio for repairs; the mechanic, a former employee of the garage, got the keys and took it out for a spin

A day after a hit-and-run which claimed the life of Shoaib Solanki, and critically injured his friend, Salim Gafoor, who is currently in the ICU in Nanavati Hospital, the Santacruz police have identified the alleged driver of the vehicle, a car mechanic named Javed Sheikh.

The Scorpio belongs to a businessman, who had given it to a garage for repairs. The police have identified Javed Sheikh, a car mechanic, who was allegedly at the wheel of the vehicle
The Scorpio belongs to a businessman, who had given it to a garage for repairs. The police have identified Javed Sheikh, a car mechanic, who was allegedly at the wheel of the vehicle

Sheikh is suspected to be at the wheel of the speeding white Scorpio, which crashed into a newspaper stand on the Linking Road extension junction on Sunday at Santacruz, where Solanki and Gafoor were standing. He ran away after the accident and the police are looking for him.

“Our primary investigation has shown that the vehicle belongs to one Mauji Ramji Patel, a businessman who is apparently affiliated to the NCP. A day prior to the accident, he had given his Scorpio for repairs to Saif Auto, which is less than a 5-minute drive from the accident site.

Being a Sunday, the garage owner was not around and Sheikh, his ex-employee, got access to the keys and decided to take the vehicle for a joyride. He then caused the fatal accident,” said investigating officer API Arun Kadam of Santacruz police station.

Kadam added that the police are also verifying if the vehicle had a second occupant, as claimed by some witnesses. “We have named Sheikh in the FIR as an accused, and are currently on the lookout for him.

He is charged under various IPC sections including 304A, (causing death due to negligence), and Section 134 of the Motor Vehicles Act that casts obligatory responsibility on every driver/owner of a vehicle involved in an accident to convey the injured to the nearest hospital or medical practitioner.”

Solanki had got a job
Salim Sayed, a resident of Sai Shraddha building where Solanki and Gafoor stay, said that Solanki had cleared his TYBcom exams and was keen on working in the Gulf; he had even managed to get a job there.

“His paperwork, including passport and visa, are all complete and he was set to fly there in the next fifteen days, but fate had something else in store for him,” said Sayed.

Gafoor’s sister was to get married on Sunday, and the accident had disrupted the preparations for a while, but the family later decided to hold the ceremony. “Even in the semi-conscious state, Salim said they should hold the wedding,” said Sayed.

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