A DAY after a child was killed when the floor sheet of a ramshackle minibus gave in, the police have decided to book the vehicle owner for negligence.
However, the mishap has raised several questions about the state of minibuses plying on City streets and the process of issuance of fitness certificates to them.
“Even booking the owner would hardly serve anybody as such buses should not have been allowed to operate in the first place”, a policeman requesting anonymity said.
“Section 304 (A) is a bailable section and in this particular case it is not mere negligence but a criminal act to let passengers board a bus despite knowing that it could be fatal”, he added.
Assistant Regional Transport Officer (ARTO) Sunil Rai Saxena said the fitness check for old vehicles is carried out annually, and if the condition of the minibus concerned deteriorated during this period its owner should have got it repaired.
“It seems this minibus somehow could not be checked during surprise inspections. We are now going to call all old minibuses for examination,” Saxena said.
The ARTO said more steps would be taken including intensive checking of old buses to ensure that such mishaps do not recur.
CSP (Shahjehanabad) Ajay Pandey said minibus owner Nisar Ahmed, a resident of Karod, would also be booked under the same section. The driver, Shahid, has already been arrested and the bus has been seized.
Four-year-old Adarsh was travelling in the bus along with his mother Poonam, a resident of Raisen, when the mishap took place. She was in Bhopal to meet her parents.
The duo boarded the bus for Barela village near Lalghati on late Thursday evening. Poonam was sitting while Adarsh was standing near her.
A part of the metal sheet gave in with a sudden jerk and the boy dropped from the moving bus. The Koh-e-Fiza police are investigating the incident.