Mumbai: Night driving is hell on the Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road (JVLR), with no streetlights and the never-ending widening and relaying work on a major part of the stretch.
Travelling down it, 50 people packed in a tempo, with unseasonal rain making the drive all the more difficult, courted disaster on Tuesday night. The vehicle turned turtle under the Larsen & Toubro Bridge on JVLR, killing two of the occupants, aged 18 and 22.
Around 10 pm, a group of nearly 50 people from Vikhroli were travelling by tempo to Chand Choli Dargah at Mithi locality in Powai. When the tempo reached below the L&T bridge, the driver lost control of the vehicle, which, after turning turtle, skidded for nearly 10 metres.
The two who died were Babloo Shamshad, 22 and Ibrahim Maqbool Shaikh,18. Shamshad was taken to Rajawadi Hospital in Ghatkopar but succumbed to his injuries. Shaikh died at Hiranandani Hospital.
Powai police said that the road had become slippery after a sudden mild rainfall on Tuesday evening. The street lighting -- or the lack of it -- on the JVLR has not been addressed at all by the authorities. Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority (MMRDA) spokesperson Dilip Kawathkar told DNA that the maintenance of the road was the responsibility of Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC).
"It is a fact that in certain patches there are no lamp posts or lights. We will request MSRDC and the municipal corporation to look into these issues urgently," said Kawathkar. MMRDA is in charge of the development of the road.
Police have booked the tempo driver, Ramzan Khan, 28, a resident of Saki Naka, for rash and negligent driving, endangering life, causing grievous hurt, under the Motor Vehicles Act. They were also verifying if Khan was under the influence of alcohol.
Senior inspector of Powai police station, Rajdoot Rupwate, said, "Others injured in the accident are out of danger."