The need for speed has claimed two more lives in the city. Two college students, both 18 years of age, died after they ran into a car at the Kherwadi junction. The accident occurred in the wee hours of Tuesday, when Rohit Khatik and Sebastian D’mello were riding a Pulsar 220 that Khatik’s father had gifted him on Ganesotsav.
Kherwadi police officials said that a barricade had been installed on the northbound road of the Western Express Highway, just before the Vakola flyover. The spot is regular witness to nighttime bike races by speed-crazy youngsters.
The duo was coming from Bandra (West) when they saw the barricade from far away. Wanting to avoid the police, Khatik, who was driving, took a U-turn in the same lane and started driving in the wrong direction going southwards on a northbound lane. To avoid oncoming vehicles, he applied brakes, due to which he lost balance, skidded, and collided head-on with an approaching car. Both died on the spot.
Senior Police Inspector Ashok Kadam of Kherwadi police station said, “We did not even see them. They may have seen us from far away and made a U-turn. We heard a loud noise and saw people gathering at the spot where we found both the bikers. We rushed them to the hospital, but they were declared dead on arrival. They had multiple body and severe head injuries.”
Kadam further added, “We have registered a case under sections 279 (rash and negligence driving), 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) and 304A (punishment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder), against both bikers. As both the youths have died, the case will be closed.” The families were too shocked by the incident and refused to comment.
Several accidents have taken place on his particular stretch of the highway, and Kherwadi junction is notorious for its midnight bike races. The illegal races are a menace to other motorists as well. Most of the times, police are unable to nab the guilty as they are unable to match their speeds.