The allegedly intoxicated driver of a pool bus ferrying students of the junior section of Birla High School for Boys rammed into a taxi at the Park Circus seven-point crossing on Monday afternoon.
No one was injured in the accident, which occurred around 2pm, said police. About 10 students, who were waiting their turn to be dropped home, were in the bus at the time.
“The driver apparently lost control of the bus, which was heading towards Park Circus bridge, and bumped into a taxi that was stationed near the seven-point crossing,” said a traffic cop.
A group of pedestrians and bystanders boarded the bus after the accident and detained the driver.
“We found the driver was drunk. We handed him over to officers of the local Beniapukur police station,” said the traffic cop.
The driver’s help was asked to contact the owner of the bus. “He sent another driver within 15 minutes, who took the children home,” said a senior officer at Lalbazar.
School officials said nothing was reported to them, either by parents or the police.
Officers of Beniapukur police station claimed the driver, identified as Monish Kumar Dey, had admitted to drinking before reporting for duty on Monday.
Dey, 43, a resident of Ultadanga, has been driving the bus for the past three years. A case has been lodged against him for rash and negligent driving.
“His driving licence has been seized. He will have to pay a fine before the court to get back his licence,” said a police officer.
Accidents involving pool cars are common in the city. In August, six students of Don Bosco, Park Circus, were injured after a gas tanker hit a Tata Sumo ferrying children beyond its capacity on Kona Expressway.
Schools do not assume responsibility for private vehicles that ferry their students since guardians directly hire their services, often in the absence of other options.
“This problem can be solved if all schools run their own buses and in adequate numbers,” said a resident of Patuli, whose two children have been travelling in pool cars for five years.
An empty school bus ran over a 43-year-old man crossing the road near the Rajabazar intersection around 6pm on Monday.
The victim was identified as Ashok Kumar Bothra, a resident of Howrah. He was rushed to hospital, where he was declared dead. Officers of Amherst Street police station arrested the driver of the bus and impounded the vehicle.