There were six of them, 3 boys and 3 girls – Rohit & Sonam, Arun & Devika and Vaibhav & Pallavi. All in their late teens. They had just finished with their 12th final examinations. To celebrate getting free from stress of last school examinations, they had got together on the last day with some other classmates at the house of one of the group straight from examination hall. They had informed their parents before hand about having party and would be late in getting home. The atmosphere was totally carefree with lots of cold drinks and fast food laid out. There was some beer too but not much. They sang whatever, danced and mimicked their teachers. Time just flew and it was past 6 in the evening before anyone realized it.
As the party started breaking up, Rohit suggested to other five that they go over to the disco opened recently in the nearby satellite town. Everyone in that “beat it up” mood agreed without a second’s hesitation. So six of them piled into car lent to Arun by his father. It took them good part of an hour to reach there due to both ways evening traffic of people returning home from work. They all had informed respective homes about it and that they would be back by midnight or so.
They had a time of their life with no care or worry weighing on their mind. They did not drink much, just a little beer to stay in that place and lots of eats. It was around midnight that Sonam pointed out that they return home. So after a little while they all reluctantly set out for return. There was not much of traffic at that time. As they got half way with their loud singing alongwith the music being played and laughing, Arun found a tractor trolley overloaded with cattle feed moving slowly in front with hardly any space to overtake. The load was in gunny cloth bulging on both sides as well as rear of the trolley. Arun gave horn and flickered lights but to no avail. There was no choice but to follow this contraption slowly till opportunity arose to overtake it. They all were cursing the driver of tractor. There were no other vehicles except another car about a kilometer behind them. They all were getting very annoyed.
After a couple of kilometers the tractor lurched towards right. So Arun on seeing little space on the left accelerated to overtake it. It was only when he was almost parallel with the trolley that he noticed a truck parked right ahead of them with load of iron rods protruding from it. There was no time for him to stop the car even with harsh application of brakes. So car hit the parked truck or rather protruding iron rods at high speed. The rods broke through the windshield and pierced Arun and Devika who was sitting in front. The impact was so strong that rods went through the whole car coming out of rear glass. All the window glasses were shatterd with shards flying all over inside the car. The car got twisted jamming the doors. Rohit and Vaibhav were sitting on the sides with Sonam and Pallavi in middle of the rear seat. Iron rods went through the gap between front two seats and pierced both the girls too. Both the boys were hit by rods on sides and flying glass pieces. There was a lone roadside dhaba nearby and few persons there rushed to the spot. The car coming behind reached the spot in a few minutes and people traveling in it stopped but could not do much as the car was badly mangled. One of them called up police on the emergency number.
Though the police arrived soon enough but by the time they could organize rescue, it was too late. All six young lively persons were no more. The tractor driver unaware of what happened had carried on but was stopped at police check post ahead as police party from spot had sent message. The offending parked truck driver and his helpers were at the dhaba to have some tea. They as well as owner of dhaba had seen the whole accident happening.
This raises question – Who do we blame for this loss of young lives?
Is it overenthusiasm of the youngsters to live it up?
Is it lack of proper parental guidance or supervision?
Is it that tractor trolley driver overloading and endangering lives of other road users?
Is it the truck driver parking dangerously loaded truck with protruding iron rods without sufficient warning or space endangering lives of others using the road?
Is it authorities who though aware of such acts of neglect by vehicles do not take proper action to stop such breaches of law?