'School laxity led to boy's death in accident'

Mohammed Faizal, a student of Bright School at Thanisandra in the city, fell out of the open door of the moving school bus when the driver applied brakes all of a sudden.

Faizal would have been alive today, if only the driver had not locked up the victim in the bus and abandoned the vehicle in a remote place and fled. A lot of time had passed by the time passersby noticed the boy’s plight and took him to hospital. He died on the way to the hospital. 

Six months after the incident that took place on June 21, Faizal’s parents await justice for him.

They feel having an attendant and first aid in the bus would have helped a great deal.

“We are still waiting to get compensation from the school management. If the school had taken a few precautionary measures, we wouldn’t have been in this situation or doing rounds to the High Court, seeking justice. It’s been a lonely struggle for us and there has been zero support from the school officials. We will fight till we get justice,” said Fahima Banu, Faizal’a mother, told a press conference on Monday.

Meanwhile, the Bihar-based driver of the mini school bus, Bharat Singh, who was arrested after the incident, has been granted bail. Lawyer Dharampal has filed a writ petition in the High Court on behalf of Faizal’s parents.

“The boy’s parents have sought an inquiry and are demanding that compensation be paid by the school authorities in the interest of justice and equity,” he said.
As per the guidelines laid down by the Supreme Court, all educational institutions must ensure that their buses are painted yellow and equipped with a first aid box, fire extinguisher and speed governors.

Most importantly, the school vehicle is supposed to have at least one attendant to assist children. But, the harsh reality is that many schools flout the rules and ply their buses without the safety regulations.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Commissioner of Transport K R Srinivasa said: “Since there are plenty of private school buses operating in the city, it is difficult to keep a tab on all of them. Objections were invited for the Supreme Court guidelines pertaining to school van safety measures and the draft was prepared for a report on the safety measures, two weeks ago. We will soon submit the final notification regarding the security issues to the State government.”  

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