A Mumbai court, which denied bail to the accused driver in connection with an accident on the Bandra Worli Sea Link that killed five persons, has said he was driving his sports utility vehicle at 109 kilometres per hour at the time of incident against the stipulated speed limit of 80 kmph.
Moreover, he has received nine e-challans for speeding earlier, which, prima facie, show he had sufficient knowledge that his dangerous act may cause death, the court said.
Additional Sessions Judge VS Gaike denied bail to SUV driver Irfan Abdul Rahim Bilakiya on December 17, the details of the order being made available on Thursday.
Bilakiya, who has a construction business, was returning home from Jogeshwari on October 5 when he allegedly rammed his SUV into three stationary cars and an ambulance on the bridge. Five persons were killed and eight injured in the accident.
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He was held for culpable homicide not amounting to murder and other offences under Indian Penal Code provisions.
The accused, through his lawyers from C K Legal, had claimed to be a victim alleging the accident was due to the mismanagement and negligence of the Bandra-Worli Sea Link and government authorities.
His legal team told court he was a victim of failure of the entire system and has been ”framed” in the case.
Bilakiya had sought bail claiming the accident was a result of system failure and an outcome of contributory negligence on part of the government authorities who failed to take appropriate safety measures after a mishap that took place at the site some time earlier.
However, the court said the accident, which took so many lives and injured others, was ”due to the dangerous acts of the applicant alone”, adding the applicant covered a distance of 2.8 kilometres from the toll point on the sea bridge to the accident spot in just 92 seconds.
”It, prima facie, appears he was driving his vehicle on the Bandra-Worli Sea Link at an average speed of 109 kilometres per hour. And as stated by the investigating officer, at one point, at the speed of 144 kilometres per hour,” the court said. ”This fact of high speed, coupled with earlier nine e-challans for high speed, prima facie shows he had sufficient knowledge that death may occur due to his dangerous act,” the court held.
Further, the act of fleeing from the site of accident without informing anybody also, prima facie, points towards his knowledge that death may occur due to his dangerous act of habitually driving his vehicle at high speed and jumping signals, the court stated.