Four labourers, engaged in road repair work for the upcoming Commonwealth Games, died when the overspeeding car crashed into them in South Delhi. Four others sustained injuries in the accident reported early on Monday.
The driver of the car, who is suspected to have been driving under the influence of alcohol, lost control over his Honda City car while ascending the Safdarjung overbridge. He first crashed into the cordoned off worksite marked by signs of 'men at work' and rammed into a stationary tractor before finally coming to rest. The driver abandoned his vehicle and fled the spot after the accident, while two others in the car remained inside.
Police officials later recovered bottles of alcohol from the car. Even if arrested, the driver will be out on bail in a day as the sections invoked in the case is bailable.
The accident occurred around 1.30 am. The labourers, at least 25 of them, were engaged on working on the road and were on contract with the public works department.
Two of the labourers -- Vikas (25) and Babu Lal (28) -- died on the spot, while two others -- Abhinandan (16) and Yogender (21) -- died during treatment at the All India Institute of Medical Science.
Four others -- Shekhar, Lallan, Shailesh and Pinky -- sustained serious injuries in the mishap and are undergoing treatment at the hospital.
Police officials said the car (registration number DL 3C BE 4414) was found registered to a company called New Copper Metal Works. The police are yet to ascertain the identity of the driver and said they are questioning the two passengers in the car -- Alam Khan and Shabaz. The police said the trio had gone out on a joy ride after a party in south Delhi, when the accident took place.
A case of drunken driving has been registered at Lodhi Colony police station.
According to official records, 4668 drunken driving cases have been reported so far this year (up to May 31, 2010). According to the National Crime Records Bureau, over 30,000 people die every year in mishaps due to drunken driving, and the death rate has steadily been increasing at the rate of 12.5 percent per annum.
In 2007 there were 3748 cases of drunken driving, which increased to 7579 cases in 2008 and 12,109 cases in 2009.