Punjab Roadways Driver gets 2 year jail for death of minor.
A School bus picking up students on route was hit by a Punjab Roadways government bus driver which left 1 student dead and 3 others injured. When the government bus driver came to realise that one student died, he fled the scene and later turned himself over to police. A hit and run case rarely results in acquittal unless the victims have a history of voluntarily injuring themselves for financial benefits.
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Balbir Singh was driving the government bus which was coming from Ludhiana and crashed into the school bus, injuring 3 students and instantly killing one. The government bus was registered to Punjab Roadways and uninsured at the time of the accident. Balbir Singh later surrendered to the police and Balbir’s counsel pled for leniency to the court but was rejected due to surrendering meant admitting to some form of involvement. Eyewitnesses placed Balbir as the colliding Punjab Roadways bus driver (Exact witnesses that testified named in news article attached).
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The specific sections applied to Balbir Singh under the Indian Penal Code are; Section 279 (rash driving or riding on a public way), Section 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others), Section 338 (Causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) and Section 304-A (Causing death by negligence).
There is something wrong when government bus drivers are speeding but a viable guess would be that they are trying to make their bus time schedule. These are the stipulations that are applied by the employers to benefit customers and also the reason for accidents; this may be one of the reasons that the bus company was also held liable to pay compensation. Leniency should not be allowed in this case because leniency will cause other drivers to be negligent also. Hopefully, the entire bus industry got the message of carefully driving and the only place leniency should be allowed is between the buses time schedule.
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Balbir Singh turning himself in to police was a major factor that proved his involvement in the accident. Even though the crash was not caused intentionally (no accidents are), someone is usually to blame for the carelessness unless force majeure (events caused by nature) is at play. The second carelessness act was Punjab Roadways not having insurance. The accused counsel pled that the victim’s are falsely implicating him but that claim can only pass if Balbir Singh was not the drive; the Punjab Roadways clearly had Balbir Singh on duty assigned to that bus. A sad day for the parents of the deceased child let alone the injured children.
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