The accident occurred a mere 16 days after another teenaged driver put two food vendors in hospital just metres away from Monday’s accident site at Khar Danda. Nearby Carter Road has been the site of several accidents in the recent past. Recently, the traffic department said the owner of the car would be arrested if an under-age person was found driving it.
Salim Khan (name changed), a resident of Uttar Pradesh, had been staying for the last few days at his maternal uncle Miraj Khan’s (45) home at Khar Danda.
Salim, anxious to try out Miraj’s grey Maruti Zen, stole the keys and set off on a drive. Only, a nervous Salim (14) hit the accelerator hard as soon as he turned on the ignition, slamming the car into a stall and two houses. Fisherwoman Parvati Saroj (50) suffered severe head injuries.
A terrified Salim jumped out of the car and tried to flee, but he was nabbed by the locals and taken to his uncle’s residence nearby. As Miraj ran to the spot to take Saroj to hospital, locals told Salim’s aunt what had happened.
Taking advantage of a diversion, Salim fled and is yet to be traced.
The teenager’s relatives said the the car was bought only eight days earlier and that Salim
had never driven an automobile before. “It seemed as if he did not know about the brakes,” said Mohammed Ayub, a witness to the crash. Ayub, who was repairing his scooter at the spot, suffered minor injuries after the car brushed his right leg.
The car itself was mangled. “It was so terrible that parts of the car flew into the houses nearby,” Ayub said.
The Khar police have started a manhunt for Salim. “He must have fled to another relative’s house. He will be caught soon,” said Subhash Deshmukh, assistant commissioner of police, Khar. “We have detained the owner of the car, Miraj, as per the Motor Vehicles Act.”