Local residents at the accident spot in Mahulbera on Wednesday. Picture by Bhola Prasad
Vehicular traffic on Sakchi-Burmamines road remained disrupted for more than two hours on Wednesday morning after local residents set up a blockade to protest against a fatal mishap at Mahulbera in Golmuri police station area.
A 35-year-old was killed when his motorcycle was hit by a speeding dumper at Mahuldia crossing around 8.30am. As he fell on the ground with the bike, the dumperís rear wheel ran over him. The victim was later identified as Sanjay Prasad, a resident of Chaibasa.
Immediately after the accident, passers-by and local shopkeepers gathered at the spot and vented their anger at the dumper and other vehicles passing by pelting stones.
The frenzied mob smashed the windscreen of the dumper that had stopped a little distance away from the spot. The dumper driver, however, managed to escape.
The violence continued for 10 minutes before the crowd put up a blockade to protest against rash driving by heavy vehicles plying on the stretch. They sought a traffic police picket on Burmamines-Sakchi road which witnesses thousands of speeding trucks and trailers through the day.
Though a police party reached the spot minutes after the mishap, the mob did not allow the body to be removed and instead kept on demanding that steps be taken to curb rash driving on the road.
When the protestors refused to budge from the spot even at 10.30am, the police resorted to mild lathicharge to disperse the crowd and remove the blockade.
The body removed and the area cleared of protestors, normal traffic movement started on the road again at 11am.
Inspector I.B. Ojha of Golmuri police station said it was difficult to say how the mishap took place, but chances were that it was the fallout of rash driving.
ďAs the dumper was coming down a slope on the road from the Burmamines end, it could have been speeding. We will ensure that heavy vehicles ply at moderate speed on the stretch from now on,Ē said Ojha, who is also officer-in-charge of Golmuri police station.
When questioned about the lathicharge, the inspector said it was just an exercise to disperse the protestors and retrieve the body so that it could be sent for post-mortem.
The police have registered a case of rash driving against the dumper driver after confiscating his vehicle.