The 17-year-old boy, who crushed management student Siddharth Sharma on April 4 in 2016 under the wheels of his Mercedes car, was allowed to drive without a licence for three years by his parents, reads the chargesheet police filed on Saturday.
Police said that the teenager, who was four days short of turning 18 on the day of the accident, was given the keys of luxury cars, including Porsche, Mercedes and Honda City, and allowed to drive around Delhi by his parents, noted the 23-page chargesheet filed against the teenager’s parents and family driver in connection with the hit-and-run case which killed 32-year-old Sharma in north Delhi’s Civil Lines in April last year.
In a first, police chargesheeted the parents because they did not stop their child from driving the vehicle. The boy had been driving since the last three years without a licence and had violated traffic rules. He had been challaned twice for speeding and once for driving without a seat belt.
“The Mercedes, which crushed management student Siddharth Sharma to death, is jointly registered in the name of his parents. The father and mother are equally responsible for allowing the boy to take the car. So we have made them accused in the case,” said a police official privy to the investigation.
On Saturday, a Delhi court listed the case for further consideration on April 27.
The chargesheet, filed in the court of metropolitan magistrate Shefali Tandon Barnala, mentioned that call detail records (CDR) of the teenager and his father were examined and it was found that the boy had spoken to his father at the time of the incident. Also, the father had paid Rs 50,000 in a hospital to admit Sharma, while the police were trying to trace him.
“The father has been made an accused for concealing information and misguiding the course of investigation. Along with the parents, the family driver is also an accused for making contradictory statements in the court,” reads the chargesheet.
The investigation officer said that the father, who runs a business of wedding cards, had tried to change the line of investigation by convincing the driver to give a false statement to police to save his son.
“Initially, the driver had said that he was the one who was driving the Mercedes at the time of the incident. But he later got scared by the wide media coverage and death of the victim and admitted that he was not driving the vehicle. This was supported by the eyewitnesses,” the chargesheet said.
The parents and the driver have been made accused under sections 304 (punishment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence), 203 (giving false information) and 109 (Punishment of abetment if the act abetted is committed in consequence) of the IPC and section 5/180 of motor vehicles act.
The teenager was initially apprehended and charged under lenient sections of causing death due to negligence and let off on bail, triggering massive protests in the city. Delhi Police later apprehended him again and charged him for culpable homicide not amounting to murder. He was granted bail by the Juvenile Justice Board later.
The CCTV footage of the accident shows Sharma crossing the road and being flung at least 15 metres in the air after being hit by the speeding Mercedes.