He was just another nondescript tenant in south Delhi’s Masjid Wali Gali in Sultanpuri, near Mehrauli, till Tuesday morning.
A photograph of the car in Union minister in which Gopinath Munde was travelling to the airport when he met with an accident in south Delhi. (Sonu Mehta/HT Photo)
His landlord and neighbours became aware of Gurvinder Singh’s existence only after several journalists thronged the locality, asking for the whereabouts of the man “who had crashed his car into Union minister Gopinath Munde’s car, leading to the latter’s death”.
Described by his landlord as a soft-spoken, humble person, Singh claimed it was Munde’s driver who jumped the traffic signal and caused the crash.
Singh claimed Munde’s driver fled the spot after which he called the police control room. Singh was arrested from the accident spot only after it was confirmed that Munde was travelling in the other car and he was pronounced dead on arrival at AIIMS.
A native of Nawanshahr in Punjab’s Hoshiarpur district, Singh lives in a two-room flat on the first floor of a three-storey building owned by Jaspal Singh, who also works with the same hotel where Singh is attached as a driver.
His landlord’s son Harpreet Singh said Gurvinder is unmarried and his parents died some years ago. “Singh stays in our flat with his younger brother and we can guarantee that he will never break any law as he is a man of discipline. Moreover, he was on leave on Monday and stayed home the whole day. So, the possibility of him being deprived of sleep is totally ruled out. Had he been at fault, he would not have stayed at the accident spot or called the police,” said Harpreet.
“We came to know about Munde’s death through the news channels. The name of Gurvinder Singh was being flashed as the accused driver. But it was only around 11 am, I got to know that the errant driver lived in our neighbourhood as a tenant. We rarely saw him as he used to stay home and not mingle much with others,” said a neighbour.