2008 BMW hit-&-run case: Two-yr RI for industrialist's son
Utsav Bhasin, the son of a Haryana-based industrialist, was on Saturday sentenced to two years in jail for mowing down a motorcyclist with his overspeeding BMW car in 2008 by a Delhi court, which rued that cow killers get more stringent punishment than errant drivers.
"Sentence for killing cow is five or seven or 14 years in different states but in case of death of a human being caused by rash or negligent driving, sentence prescribed in law is only 2 years," Additional Sessions Judge Sanjeev Kumar said.
After pronouncing the sentence, the court granted a statutory bail to Bhasin, enabling him to file an appeal in the high court, and asked him to furnish a bail bond of Rs 50,000 with a surety of like amount.
Expressing shock over the statistics of road accidents in India, the judge said, "I am compelled to observe that India has a disreputable record of road accidents" while noting that according to National Crime Record Bureau during 2015, a total of 4.64 lakh cases of road accidents were reported which rendered 4.82 lakh persons injured and 1.48 lakh deaths.
"Human life is precious. Road users have a fundamental right to life and liberty which includes the right to safety under Article 21 of the Constitution. It is the duty of the state to ensure safety on roads of the people and it cannot shy away from its duty in any circumstance," the judge said.
The court directed the convict to pay a compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the deceased victim's kin and Rs 2 lakh to the other injured man, a journalist, who was riding pillion on the two-wheeler.
It also termed as "unfortunate" the fact that even in Delhi, the capital, there are no exclusive non-motorised vehicle lanes in most of its roads.
The court had, on May 5, held Bhasin guilty of offences under sections 304A (causing death by negligence), 279 (driving rashly which could endanger human life) and 338 (causing grievous hurt) of the Indian Penal Code.
The court had while convicting him dropped the charges of 304(II)(culpable homicide not amounting to murder) of the IPC. Bhasin was driving his BMW car when he had hit the two-wheeler on Moolchand flyover in South Delhi, killing Anuj Singh on September 11, 2008.
The brother of the
deceased said that he would file an appeal in the high court against the dropping of a stringent charge of culpable
homicide not amounting to murder under section 304 (II) of the IPC.