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The Pune-Porsche Horror

May 27, 2024 13:22 IST
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This, asserts Minnie Vaid, is hardly a new phenomenon -- entitled minors getting behind the wheel of super expensive cars, mowing down innocent victims in a drunken stupor and getting away with it scot-free!

IMAGE: The Porsche and motorcycle involved in the accident kept at the Yerwada police station in Pune. Photograph: Screen grab/ANI Video

No one believes the 17 year old involved in the Porsche accident will ever be punished for his 'alleged' heinous crime.

Not one single person -- especially not the grieving parents of the two 24-year-old IT engineers who died as a result of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Heartbreaking videos of a mother begging with folded hands and teary eyes for justice for her son's horrific, untimely, death may garner likes and fuel more outrage, but all of it is likely to be online and will fade away in less than a fortnight.

This is after all, hardly a new phenomenon -- entitled minors getting behind the wheel of super expensive cars such as Porshes and BMWs, mowing down innocent victims in a drunken stupor and getting away with it scot-free!

Or in this case, getting bail and having to write a 300-word essay on road safety and revise road signs!

The absurdity and scale of the 'punishment' meted out by the Juvenile Justice Board to the young man who spent a reported Rs 48,000 at one bar (in around 90 minutes) and then moved on to the next one, driving a car without a license or registration, sparked a furore on social and mainstream media.

This was perhaps the sole reason for subsequent measures like the cancellation of bail and his being sent to the remand home.

Lurid newspaper stories even outlined in a neat box for easy access, what the 'boy' did at the remand home, changing his routine to sleep at 10.30 pm, wake up at 6 am and play football with the inmates since he had no issue 'mixing' with others at the remand home.

Such celebrity coverage is akin to what film stars receive when they spend a few hours behind bars, till their drivers come to the rescue, as might have happened in this case too had the boy's family driver not admitted his testimony was tutored and a result of being held captive.

Despite available evidence including videos showing the crowd slapping the young man with no driver in sight, new narratives will be built in the coming days by the best lawyers money can buy and they will be believed.

The media and outraged social media commentators and the public at large, will move on to the next big-ticket news -- the Lok Sabha election results -- and the builder's scion will be back in the airconditioned luxury of his home and given the keys to yet another Rs 2 crore vehicle.

The best, most effective way to secure any kind of justice for the two young promising lives -- Anish Awadhiya and Ashwini Costa --is to keep the focus on this case relentlessly and for as long as it takes.

Repetition works, reminding the public of wrong-doing on a daily basis works, it personalises the news and the victims.

Walter Cronkite, the legendary American newscaster, used to end each news bulletin in 1980 with 'On this 222nd day of captivity of the American hostages in Iran...', a daily reminder to viewers to not forget the hostages' trauma, their unseen plight made visible by constant televised appeals.

I wish our media -- mainstream and social -- takes a similar leaf and signs off bulletins/posts/reels with 'This is the 8th day that the parents of two young promising engineers killed in the Pune Porsche hit and attempted run, await justice'.

I will, even if no one else does.

Minnie Vaid is a journalist, documentary film-maker and author of five books, her areas of interest are human rights, gender, environment and health.

Feature Presentation: Ashish Narsale/

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