Private bus mows down two sisters at Jagraon | punjab$dont-miss | Hindustan Times
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Private bus mows down two sisters at Jagraon

Two sisters of seven and twelve years of age were crushed under a private bus at Jagraon on Monday morning while they were on their way from Ferozepur to Ludhiana, along with their cousin, on a motorbike.

punjab Updated: Jun 13, 2016 22:15 IST
HT Correspondent
People throwing stones at the bus on Monday.
People throwing stones at the bus on Monday.(HT Photo)

A Jujhar company private bus mowed down two sisters aged seven and 12 at about 10.30am on Monday here and injured their brother after crashing into their motorcycle.

The siblings were on way home to Jawaddi in Ludhiana from relative’s at Ferozepur when the accident occurred. As the driver and conductor abandoned the bus and fled, an outraged public pelted the passenger vehicle with stones, smashed its windowpanes, and were about to burn it down when a heavy police force came over and prevented it.

Victims Sneha (12) and Shrishti (7), and their brother, Karan (22), were tailing the motorcycle carrying their mother, Parveen, and her brother. They had reached Pashu Mela Ground near Sem Bridge when the bus hit them from behind, missing a car narrowly. The girls fell off and the bus crushed their skulls under its wheels. The impact tossed Karan’s helmet into a roadside field but he survived with injuries. The victims’ father, Raju Kalyan, is a jagran (religious function) organiser in Ludhiana.

Also read I Moga bus molestation-death: Family accepts compensation, victim cremated

After the accident, the people from nearby and other commuters blocked traffic for at least three hours against no action from the state government and police against the “killer private buses of people of political influence”. Eyewitness Amarjit Singh said blamed the incident on the “rash bus driver”. “The young man (Karan) was lucky that he fell into a field,” he said.

Family holds on to bodies

The parents of the two girls killed in the accident sat wailing in the middle of the road over the bodies of their daughters. The mob didn’t let an ambulance that from the Jagraon Civil Hospital to take away the victims. They demanded a murder case against the bus driver first. Senior superintendent of police (SSP) Upinder Singh Ghuman and deputy superintendent of police (DSP) Rashpal Singh Dhindsa were among the officers who tried to pacify them.

Finally, bus driver Balwinder Singh of Mehna in Moga district was booked for murder and arrested by the afternoon. The DSP confirmed both developments. In a press statement issued on Monday after the accident, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) condemned the “gruesome killing by Jujhar bus” and called for a stringent action against the driver and the transport company.

Reckless drivers shielded by leaders: MLA Bains

Ludhiana (south) independent legislator Balwinder Singh Bains said the political links of the Jujhar bus company owner were well known but “now even his drivers believe they have licence to kill as well as immunity from law”. The MLA said the bus company as well as the state government ought to compensate the family that lost two daughters.

Many fatal accidents in Punjab over the past few years have involved private buses of the ruling Badal family and its close associates. Last December, a girl (12) girl was crushed under the wheels of a New Deep company bus near Makhu in Ferozepur district.

In May 2015, a woman and her daughter in Moga were allegedly thrown off a moving bus of the Orbit company co-owned by deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal. The mother was trying to save the girl from being molested by the bus staff. The girl Arshdeep Kaur (13) was killed on the spot, while her mother was injured grievously. The matter, however, died a sudden death when the company paid victim’s family `24 lakh routed through the Red Cross.