Three schoolchildren were seriously injured when the autorickshaw they were traveling in overturned under the Moti Bagh flyover. There were eight children in the auto.
The police said the driver, Satender, was drunk and overspeeding. The driver’s friend, Hemant, who was also drunk, was sitting next to him in the auto rickshaw.
The children, students of Class II to VI, belonged to Navyug School in Moti Bagh.
“The driver was stinking of alcohol. We begged him to stop but he did not. He was trying to jump the red light,” said Rahul Kumar, a student of Class V. Rahul’s forearm was badly bruised in the accident.
The other students two who were seriously injured have been identified as Siddhartha (10) and Sakshi (7).
Five others — Chaitanya, Karan, Akriti, Tushar and Akriti — had a narrow escape. All the children are residents of R.K. Puram. The children told the police that the auto rickshaw was overcrowded with two men on the driver’s seat.
They were rushed to nearby Charak Palika Hospital for medical attention.
“I was sitting in the front seat. My hand was stuck below the auto rickshaw when it overturned. I screamed for help. The other children who were sitting at the rear fell on me due to the impact,” said Rahul.
Police said they have arrested Satender and detained Hemant. An examination at Safdarjung Hospital confirmed that both were under the influence of alcohol.
“The signal had turned yellow and yet the driver was overspeeding,” said an eyewitness.
The police said they had registered a case of rash and negligent driving. They said they would write to the Transport Authority to seek cancellation of the driver’s permit.