Tuesday, November 14, 2006

"They showed no remorse"

Standing in a pool of blood, near seven freshly dead bodies, they threatened the survivors. Three of them tried to wrench off the number plate of the car before giving up and scooting from the scene of the accident.

21 year old Alister Pereira's drunken driving disaster has shocked and ughed Mumbai. Accidents happen, we all know. But this? 'Another case of spoilt young brats bereft of values'.

"We didn't mean to do it, but hey..." They were just a bunch of labourers, y'know. How hard will it be to buy our way out of it?

You feel disgusted when you read those words, but it's the plain and ugly truth. In 1999, 21 year old Sanjeev Nanda ran over and killed 6 people. Including 3 policemen! He was drunk and at the wheel of an unregistered BMW.

Witnesses and families of the dead were paid off. The wheels of justice decided to halt and let Sanjeev and his friends alight. Unscathed.

And, four years after Salman Khan's famous 'hit and run' accident, he is none the worse for the wear. His rash driving, possibly under the influence of alcohol, killed one person and injured four.

A trial began. It drags on. A key witness has turned hostile. Some have 'disappeared'. For all practical purposes, Salman is a free man. As Alister can soon hope to be. Remorse, or no remorse, money and influence will bail him out.

And there will be more Sanjeevs and Salmans and Alisters. Unless justice is delivered without regard to who you are and how fat your wallet is.

The conviction of Priyadarshini Mattoo's killer is one such landmark case. But can the media and the family pursue justice so doggedly every time?

They were just labourers, after all...


  1. i agree with the view as long as we hear people going scott free after creating such crimes as running over d pedestrians or even famous jessica laal case ,such incidents r bound to happenn again and again with those doing it knowing in back of their mind they might still be able to get away with it .

  2. Anonymous8:36 PM

    Nothing will happen to them. No use discussing about this since we know that it is a foregone conclusion.

  3. Anonymous9:38 AM

    I bet the witnesses will turn "hostile" this time around too!The judicial system is volatile alright,but should nt the police force be held partly responsible too ? I mean if there is a scenario where there will be regular monioring and patroling then there wold atleast be a fear amongst the young spoilt brats of the nation !!

  4. Anonymous9:39 AM

    And to balaji ... Is nt this attitude that is ruining the nation ?!!

  5. at least the newspaper all over the country covered it in the first page so it will be tough for these guys to brush off the matter.

  6. Accidents because of drunken/rash driving should be punished severly specially that kills/maims people. But it is taken up in the media (including blogs) only when it involves some spoilt brats or a celebrity. Otherwise they go unnoticed. In the end, it becomes a case for spoilt brat - bashing. The media (blogs included) should also remember that on the highways, scores of people die everyday because of rash/drunken driving by truck drivers. This goes unnoticed by the mainstream media. They appear in some remote corner of the inside section of the local media. The national media will devote 24 hour live coverage of the rescuing of the boy - Prince - from the well he fell into, but none of them report highway accidents. Killing by negligence should be punished no doubt. But in our haste to show the sympathy to the poor, who were sleeping on the sidewalks, we overlook many other things. I guess nobody really bothers about those things. Looks like everybody needs a bakra to beat-up. This time it is some Alistair Periera....If somebody wants to help/sympathise with the victims, he/she should better start with the highway accidents. But then, they'll not get any publicity.

  7. corporal punishment should be given
    so that others can get a warning
    before doing any unlawful activity.

  8. Anonymous4:00 PM

    @Vinod >> I know it is unfortunate, but that is the way it works isn't it?

    There were violent bomb blasts in Mumbai metro. A whole load of our citizens were killed. Was there any person arrested till now. Do we have any suspects? I know it is very difficult to find the culprits and it is going to be a needle in the haystack. But what guarantee do we have that this will not happen in the future.

    Then what happened? The mumbaikar spirit was hailed. What ever be the case people will turn up to work the next day. We will let the terrorists rule us...politicians proclaimed. Do you think that is the reason. The reason is if I don't work, I will not be able to feed my familiy.

    Is this not the case?

  9. at least one crook has got what he deserves...the IIPM building in Delhi has been sealed as well.As it turns out, even the building was not authentic! Rejoice!

  10. The footpath is no place to be sleeping on. Action should also be taken against the contractor doing the road work, as he brought the migrant labour from their villages; but did not provide housing to them.

  11. I think we bloggers are idealistic I-dont-know-what. We know nothing is going to change and we still keep writing hoping that someday something will.

    Just yesterday, I saw a police car bump slightly into a standing vehicle. And the guys in the vehicle got blasted for being there, in a perfectly normal parking slot that is meant for cars. And onlookers just looked on. And people like me keep speaking about it...

  12. You are right. Now that the Jesica lall case has been taken up by the most celebrated lawyer in the country, god alone knows what shall happen- read my latest post if interested.

  13. Anonymous9:36 PM

    Driving drunk and running over people is unpardonable. But what I want to know is where you're quoting this from?

    <<"We didn't mean to do it, but hey..." They were just a bunch of labourers, y'know. How hard will it be to buy our way out of it?>>

    Also, who exactly said this?

  14. read about it, think about it once, discuss it, argue about it over coffe, and at the end of the day...for get it...

    typical indian stuff...

    can't fight it grl...just can't.

  15. C'mon guys, its an accident... Alistar didn't go and seek out the laborers to run over them...

    This could have happened with anybody... you, me or even rashmi...
    If you have never ever driven a vehicle, I can't argue with you, but if you have then you must know... it’s just a momentary lapse
    I know you will come back to me saying that he was drunk... but then would your reaction have been any different if salman had not been drunk at the time of accident... just think

    Just because the guy was driving a corolla or land cruiser it becomes news??? He becomes a brat???
    Boss look around.. this kind of thing keeps happening all the time... the cars may be smaller or it may be trucks... even there the drivers are not awarded life imprisonment...

    Amazing how some of you have put up bullshit comments equating this to murders and rapes... and even you rashmi
    and btw I too would like to know the source of your (mis)quote...

    I totally agree with the person who mentioned that footpath is no place to sleep... where the hell were our law enforcers...

    PS: this is very irresponsible post by you rashmi... you are just forcing your biased opinion down our throats... coming from a journalist, this is very disappointing...

  16. But atleast in Priyadarshini's & other cases like Nitish Katara we had their family coming out in open but where do you expect these people to complain & take it to higher authorities.Am sure it's gonna fall in deaf ears.

    Wonder as to when we ever will have a judiciary system which will provide instant or atleast a decent hard verdict on such people.

    If not,it's always going to be "they are labourers you know" attitude which will let them off the hook

  17. @ Shikari Shambhu.....Accidents happen in the nights only when people are either drunk & driving or there are driving recklessly. In either cases, it is a CRIME to not be careful while driving. Even a small mistake is not justified in accidents if it causes somebody's DEATH. Alistor should be punished for the crime..atleast some yrs of jail sentence...so that no other brash youth will ever drive recklessly on the road..kill ppl & then say like Mr.Shambhu....Accidents happen man...or like Alistor...they were only labourers after all

  18. @nivan dude

    First of all please make an effort to understand before you use anything...
    "they were only labourers after all" was never said by alistar... these are the words that your Ms Rashmi has attributed to him in the name of journalistic freedom...

    Secondly, there is a process of law... and he will get what he deserves... its none of your business to suggest the quantum of punishment

    And finally, the whole point of my comment was that this whole issue has come into prominence only because this guy was driving a corolla and not a maruti 800... just look around you and you will find a million drunken driving cases...
    Forget alistar, just think for a moment, don't you know anybody at all who has ever driven after drinking... your dad, mom, bro, sister, friend anybody... now would your reaction have been the same if they were involved in an accident...

  19. @ Shikari Shambhu...the point is not what Rashmi said or how many yrs. jail sentence should Alistor get or not get & even whether he was driving a corolla,800 or a merc...the point is 8 ppl have DIED and 6 ppl are injured...alcohol bottles were found in the car...all the guys tested +ve for alcohol.Their punishment will be a lesson for all the rich brats who inspite of being aware that drinking & driving is dangerous...still do so and kill ppl.

    God Forbid, but what if any of your close ppl are ever a victim to such reckless driving...now would your reaction still be the same??? Would you still let the person go scot free???

  20. i really appreciate your great concerns dude...
    alistar would be punished as he deserves... no issues there...

    hope you keep showing the same amount of concern for every such drunken driving/rash driving case...
    hope we see a similar post from rashmi everytime there is a road accident...
    hope the media keep you updated with reports of all accidents from all over india like its doing in this case...
    hope you learn to drive and have a minor accident just enough to bring you to your senses....

  21. FYI...ive been driving for the past 6 yrs now & have yet to get my car scratched!

    wish i could agree with you & say : "accidents happen man & ppl die too..hey..dont make a big issue of it dude...go & kill somebody in an accident..& then some sense will come 2 u...its actually not a big deal...so chill..okay!!!!"...But CANT!!

  22. While I agree these people were drunken brats... Images of the scene of the accident show there's no elevated pavement. Even a normal person on a bad day can make a small mistake and cross the imaginary line between the road and the pavement.

    The blame lies equally with the authorities for allowing people to sleep on the streets. And the politicians who swindle all the money which should've been spent on the welfare of these people.

  23. "We didn't mean to do it, but hey...They were just a bunch of labourers, y'know. How hard will it be to buy our way out of it?"

    You need to write about facts and not let your literary imagination run wild, keep that for fiction. How do you know those guys said what you have reported!!

    Undercover Indian

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