The accident that killed trainee Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Nishant Kumar at this village 9 kilometers from Moga on Tuesday night was the result of going over the speed limit.
The villagers who were on the scene after the accident that day had said the Innova car involved seemed to have hit the tree with great force. It had five people, including three other trainee IAS officers (Shashi Ranjan, Ajit Kumar, Harsh Kumar) and driver, Raj Kumar, on board.
Some remains of the car remain at the accident site. The impact had chopped a big chunk of wood off the trunk. Villager Kaaku, who was among the first ones to respond, said he had found the bonnet ripped open and the engine fallen out after the car had taken many cartwheels.
The villagers called for ambulance at 108, and later, Nishant died within 10 minutes of reaching the Moga Civil Hospital. Asked for his analysis, Nihal Singh Wala deputy superintendent of police Jaswinder Singh said the
car had hit the tree at more than 100 kilometers an hour, and only the drivers' blood test report would prove if he had been drunk.
The station house officer of Ajitwal, who is also investigating officer, said Ajit Kumar had the car's control during the accident, while the driver had been in the backseat with two trainee officers. "The vehicle belongs to an income-tax official in Jalandhar, who had invited the officers to a party and, later, sent the driver to drop them to Takhtpura village where they stayed with batch mates," said the SHO.
An eyewitness said before the tree, the car had hit the sides of a small bridge on a nullah and the people inside were not sure of their way. Punjab State Road Safety Council vice-chairman Dr Kamaljit Soi blamed the accident on the road-building contractor, who had failed to put diversion signs for drivers unfamiliar with the route. "Also, neither the driver nor the trainee officers were wearing seatbelt, which along with speeding and drink driving is the leading cause of fatal accidents on Punjab's roads," said Dr Soi.