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1 more dead in underpass mishap
4 Days, 4 Deaths: Moolchand Underpass
Dangerous For Two-Wheelers
Vineet Gill | TNN
New Delhi: A 25-year-old motorcyclist died after his bike hit a Blueline bus while coming out of the Moolchand underpass on Sunday evening. In the past four days, the underpass, which is undergoing renovation, has witnessed four accidents — each involving two-wheelers — and as many fatalities. Police said that even as none of the victims wore helmets, it was found that they were speeding at the time of the accident.
Around 7.45pm on Sunday, Keshav Dutt Ojha — a Nepalese citizen who resides in the Punjabi Bagh area — lost balance of his bike and hit the side of the Blueline bus. He was flung onto the road and died while being taken to hospital.
According to eyewitnesses, the motorcycle (DL 10 SA 0294) was speeding when the accident took place. ‘‘Prima facie, it appears that the Blueline bus hit the motorbike on the side. The victim was thrown off the bike and suffered serious head injuries. He died while being taken to hospital. We are investigating the case,’’ said a police officer, adding that the cops did not recover any helmet from the accident spot.
Ojha was one of the caretakers and temple priests in the Sanathan Dharma temple in East Punjabi Bagh. He came to settle in Delhi around four years ago from his hometown in Baitadi, Nepal. ‘‘Both of us lived in the temple. On Sunday, he was on his way to Ashram for some work when he met with the accident,’’ said Nityanand, Ojha’s cousin. The driver of the bus is reported to be absconding since the incident. Cops have impounded the Blueline bus that plies on Ring Road.
This was the fourth accident on this stretch in a span of less than a week.
PWD is carrying out road recarpeting work in the underpass. And with the new layer of road about an inch-and-a-half higher than the older one, commuters have been facing a lot of inconvenience.
Moreover, the road is being built in patches, resulting in an abrupt dip in some places. ‘‘I don’t think only the road recarpeting work is to blame. Road accidents happen due to a number of factors though the spate of accidents began just when the recarpeting work started. The relaying work might have caused some distraction,’’ said an officer from Defence Colony police station.
Joint CP (traffic) Satyendra Garg said, ‘‘Traffic police officials visited the site after the four accidents. But so far we have not established the carpeting work as the reason behind the same. We are getting it examined further.’’ Four cases have been registered in the past five days.
Another officer said: ‘‘It should be noted that none of the victims was wearing helmets. We can’t point at the recarpeting work as the sole reason.
But we have asked the contractors to finish the work quickly and have also sent a report in this matter to the design and development department of Delhi Police.’’
PWD is reviewing the method of construction on city roads and, according to an official, has issued a list of precautionary measures to improve road safety.
‘‘Traffic diversions should start at least 100 feet before the work site, and it should be efficient. We have also recommended making temporary slopes where the road strips dip by more than an inch. Also, signages should be put up near the worksites during the day and night,’’ said a PWD official.
TRAGIC END: Bike that Keshav (R) was riding. Commuters say PWD work has made underpass dangerous