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Bandra-Worli sea link accident: Driver’s blood samples collected after 14 hours

Updated on: 08 October,2022 08:23 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Anurag Kamble |

Expert says this delay could affect in determining if he was under the influence at the time of the accident

Bandra-Worli sea link accident: Driver’s blood samples collected after 14 hours

Irfan Abdul Rahim Bilkiya outside Bhoiwada court on Thursday

The biggest lacuna in the probe into the Bandra Worli Sea Link accident, which claimed five lives, seems to be from cops’ side. Blood samples of the accused driver, Irfan Abdul Rahim Bilkiya, were reportedly taken 14 hours after the accident. This, experts said, leaves a margin of error in determining if he was under the influence. Cops, however, said they took Bilkiya for medical check soon after arresting him. The reports of the tests are awaited. mid-day had also reported how the investigation officer was not present in the court on Thursday for the hearing.

The 40-year-old accused was speeding on the Bandra Worli Sea Link early on Wednesday and rammed into stationary vehicles, killing five and injuring eight others around 2.53 am. He then helped the injured get into ambulances and police van, but thereafter decamped from the spot. Bilkiya, who had also suffered injuries to his right hand, went to Saifee hospital for treatment. He then went to his home on Mohammed Ali Road and slept.

A team of Worli police apprehended him from his home around 9 am and brought him to the police station for questioning. However, mid-day investigation has revealed that though he was brought to the police station early in the day, his blood samples were collected around 4 pm. This gap of 14 hours could be crucial in terms of alcohol or drug level check.

Also Read: Bandra-Worli sea link accident: Accused got challan for speeding on sea link just 5 days before

When asked, Dr Rajesh Dere, head of Forensic Medicine at Sion hospital, said, “In cases where cops want to ascertain if the driver has consumed alcohol or any drug, they should collect the blood sample from the person as soon as possible. In case of any such substances, its presence in the blood starts to recede gradually. So, every minute is crucial.”

Investigating Officer Amar Jagdale refuted the claim about the delay and said, “The accused was arrested in the afternoon of October 5 and immediately taken for medical check.”

Meanwhile, Bilkiya was produced before the Bhoiwada court on Friday evening. Worli cops told the court that they believed he was driving at a speed of 100-120 km per hour. They also pointed out that the impact of the accident was such that the vehicles got dragged around 45 metres. The officers also stated that the accused was neither giving statements nor cooperating with the investigation.

Cops added they are awaiting his alcohol and drug check report as well as a report from the speedcam at the sea link.

Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate J P Shirale remanded Bilkiya in judicial custody till October 19.

The defence will apply for bail before the sessions court on Monday.

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