TN village mourns girl's fall to death from school bus

TN village mourns girl's fall to death from school bus

Bus-with-a-hole recently issued with fitness certificate

The uncalled-for death of a minor girl at Mudichur, who reportedly slipped through a hole beneath the seat of a school bus and crushed under its wheels, had widespread repercussions on Thursday.

While the police arrested principal of the school Vijayan, bus owner Yogeshwaran, driver Seeman and charged them under non-bailable sections of the Indian Penal Code, it was learnt that the vehicle recently got its “Fitness Certificate (FC)” renewed by the Regional Transport Office at Tambaram, despite having a hole on its floor big enough for a child to slip through.

Responding to the public outcry triggered by the incident, Chief Minister Jayalalitha has directed the officials to take punitive action against those responsible for the accident.
All shops in Mudichur area remained shut on Thursday even as locals took to the streets in remembrance of the deceased, after her body was brought home after post mortem.

Besides, the Madras High Court’s first bench, led by the chief justice, summoned the advocate general on Thursday and sought details on how the bus owner succeeded in getting the FC. The bench also directed the RTO officials concerned to appear before it on Friday. 

Shruthi Sethumadhavan, a class-II student of a private school at East Tambaram, 30 kms from here, had on Wednesday slipped through the hole and crushed under the wheels, after the bus driver braked suddenly. Though other students in the bus and motorists raised an alarm immediately, it was too late when the bus stopped. Eye witnesses said Shruthi’s mother, Priya, was waiting to receive her at the bus stop.

“It all happened within a few minutes,” said an eye witness.
Incensed by the obvious lackadaisical and negligent attitude of the persons concerned, a mob went on a rampage in Mudichur on Wednesday evening and set the bus on fire before thrashing the bus driver and the attendant. The duo were later rescued by the police.

However, it is still not clear whether the bus was actually owned by the school or rented from a private operator for ferrying the students.

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