An auto- rickshaw driver was arrested by the Kalyan police on Friday for allegedly thrashing a Navi Mumbai Municipal Transport (NMMT) after the bus driver asked him to refrain from tapping on bus as the noise was distracting him. The incident occurred while the bus was on its way to Kalyan from Navi Mumbai.
Besides assaulting the bus driver, Umesh Dhavare, 22, also vandalised the bus by breaking its windows, during which five to six passengers sustained minor cuts. Dhavare is a resident of Kalyan.
The police said that Dhavare first knocked on the bus while it was in motion near Suchak Naka around 5pm. He did not stop there and kept repeating it while driving his auto-rickshaw. It was here that bus driver Vilas Bhalchamdra Desale, 28, asked him to stop as it was distracting him and could result in an accident.
An officer from Kolshewadi police station said, “This enraged Dhavare, who over took the bus and parked his vehilce in front of it. He then climbed inside the driver’s cabin and started abusing the driver. When Desale retaliated, Dhavare assaulted him. He then dragged Desale out of the bus and attacked him with a cricket bat a few children who were passing by had on them.”
After assaulting Desale, Dhavare vandalised the bus injuring six passengers. “All the injure ahd sustined minor cuts and were discharged after receiving first aid,” the officer said.
Narrating his ordeal, Desale said despite pleading to take the matter to the police, Dhavare kept abusinga nd hitting him with the bat.
“I tried to prevent him from vandalising the bus, but to no avail. He was abusing me and broke several windows. I still don;t know what provoked him to such an extent,” he said.
Riyaz Shaikh,45, one of the passengers, said, “We were 10 people in the bus when he [Dhavare] started circling the bus with a bat in his hand. Without warning, he started breaking windows of the seats passengers had occupied, in which six people sustained injuries. The way he was assaulting the bus driver, I tough he was going to kill him. At one point when he passed me, he smelled funny. I’m sure he was under the influence of drugs.”
An inspector from Manpada police station said that Dhavare was arrested and booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and will be produced in court on Saturday.