Police on Friday arrested BJP lawmaker Hema Malini’s driver, a day after her Mercedes collided with a Maruti Alto in Rajasthan killing a two-year-old girl and leaving the actor and four others injured.

    He was produced in court and later granted bail. Officials said Uttar Pradesh resident Mahesh Thakur, the accused, was facing charges of culpable homicide and causing death by negligence.

    Television footage showed Mathura MP Hema Malini walking away from the spot with blood dripping down her face following the crash on National Highway 11 near Dausa district in the western state.

    The incident brought the spotlight back on India’s dangerous roads where about 200,000 people die every year in traffic accidents, according to WHO data. Last year, Hema Malini’s party colleague Gopinath Munde was killed in a car crash in Delhi nearly a week after the 64-year-old took office as the country’s rural affairs minister.

    While the infant travelling in the Maruti hatchback reportedly died on the spot, her parents, a four-year-old brother and an aunt are undergoing treatment at a government hospital in Jaipur.

    Hema Malini, who was in the back seat of the Mercedes, was admitted to a private medical centre with a nasal fracture and injuries to her forehead, cheeks and legs.

    “A surgery of debridement (removal of damaged tissues) and repair of lacerated wounds was carried out post-midnight,” said Pratim Tambole, facility director at the Fortis hospital. “It was a two-hour long process under general anaesthesia. She is now in post-operative intensive care unit.”

    The 66-year-old actor was going to Jaipur after visiting a temple in Rajasthan’s Karauli district when her car crashed into the Maruti Alto carrying the family headed to Lalsot city.

    Read: After criticism, Hema Malini expresses sorrow over child's death

    Car crash victims protest 'lavish attention' to Hema Malini

Chennai pip Warriors by 10 runs, qualify for semis

  • PTI, Port Elizabeth
  • |
  • Updated: Sep 23, 2010 00:41 IST

Chennai Super Kings defeated Warriors by 10 runs in a crucial Group A match and qualified for the semifinals of the Champions League Twenty20 cricket tournament in Port Elizabeth.

Electing to bat, Mike Hussey (50 off 39) and Murali Vijay (35 off 27) shared a 63-run opening stand before skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni came up with a late 21-ball 31 to guide Chennai to 136 for six in their alloted 20 overs.

Chennai bowlers then rose to the occasion and restricted the Warriors to 126 for eight.

With this victory, Chennai have secured a place in the first semifinal against fellow Indian Premier League side Royal Challengers Bangalore in Durban on Friday.

Even though Warriors lost the match, they too have qualified for the last four stage, pipping Victoria Bushrangers on net run rate.

Chasing the modest 137, Warriors needed 109 to book their their place in the semis and they finally went on to score 126 for eight.

Warriors will face South Australia Redbacks in the second semifinal on Saturday.

For Warriors, Justin Kreusch turned out to be the hero as he first picked up three wickets for 19 and then scored valuable 25 with the bat to help his side's cause at the St George's Park in Port Elizabeth.

Warriors' chase never got going as they were dealt with the first blow in the fourth over in the form of Ashwell Prince.

Prince fell to a one-handed blinder from Justin Kemp in the slip off off-spinner R Aswin.

From there on, the home team found runs hard to come by against the Chennai slow bowlers, which eventually resulted in the dismissal of Warriors captain Davey Jacobs (32).

Jacobs was pounced by Hussey at deep midwicket off left-arm spinner Shadab Jakati as the right-hander went for a slog-sweep.

The slow bowlers again came to the party as part-time spinner Suresh Raina had Colin Ingram caught by S Badrinath at the midwicket boundary.

But after a fine showing with the ball, Kreusch also shone with the bat with a valuable 26-ball 25 and together with Mark Boucher (25) added 44 runs to guide Warriors into the semifinals even though the South African side lost the encounter.

Needing, 46 off the last four overs, Boucher relived the pressure with two sixes off Jakati.

But just when it seemed the Warriors will cruise home, Chennai picked up two wickets in a span of three balls to bring the match into balance.

First Kreusch departed, stumped by Dhoni off Ashwin and then three balls later Boucher was caught at long-on by Kemp.

New man in Johan Botha, somewhat, changed the complexion of the match when he struck Doug Bollinger for two boundaries in the penultimate over, but it was not to be Warriors' day as he perished in search of a non-existent double.


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