The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Speed-sick passengers rise up to hand over reckless bus driver

Passengers of a private bus, that was trying to speed past another on the same route on AJC Bose Road, scripted a history of sorts on Thursday. They not only protested the rash driving, but also summoned a traffic sergeant and asked him to take steps against the defiant driver.

The drama unfolded around 10.30 in the morning when the buses were racing on the stretch between Ripon Street and Park Street during peak hour.

A traffic sergeant from the East Traffic Guard finally stopped the bus and booked the errant driver, at the behest of the passengers, who later got off at the Park Street intersection and boarded the other bus on the same route.

Metro has been campaigning against road rogues for the past two weeks, exposing how speeding private buses and autorickshaws were posing a serious threat to life and limbs and on several occasions, even killing people.

The errant bus was later brought to Park Street police station and the driver booked for rash and negligent driving, under Section 279 of the IPC.

“I was heading north from the Park Street crossing down AJC Bose Road when I saw two buses on the same route — 3D/1 — hurtling down the road. One of them was driving down the right side of the road divider, while the other was trying to overtake it from the left. I immediately took a turn on my motorcycle and decided to chase,” said Samar Jai Singh, the traffic sergeant on duty.

As Singh reached Nonapukur tram depot, he spotted two passengers — in the bus that was trying to overtake the other — desperately beckoning him. When he drew up closer, both of them gave vent to their anger, complaining about the recklessness of the man at the wheel.

“We were trying to tell the bus driver that this was not the way to speed at this time of the day, but he would not pay heed. Some of us even told the conductors to stop the race, but in vain,” complained Shankar Chatterjee, one of the passengers. The man from Belghoria even handed over his ticket to Singh and asked him to take steps.

And so did the other passenger, Sandip Ghosh from AJC Bose Road. Both of them handed over their bus tickets to the traffic sergeant.

As the buses sped past, Singh drove down a few yards and directed the errant driver to stop. The bus was asked to stop at the Park Street-AJC Bose Road crossing and then passengers told to get off and take the other bus.

“This was a clear case of rash driving and the driver was booked accordingly. I realised that if this man went ahead, he would have ended up killing somebody,” sergeant Singh said later.

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