EJH mishap: Driver on the run

State Govt announces ex gratia to victims

SHILLONG: The driver involved in the East Jaintia Hills road accident on March 8 that claimed three lives is absconding.
Making a suo motu statement on the incident on Friday, Chief Minister Mukul Sangma said three persons, 70-year-old Kalbina Pakem and 54-year-old Rophina Paslein, both from Khahnar village, and five-year-old Pdianghunlangki Lamurong of Mooknor village were killed and 39 others injured on March 8 morning when the Mahindra Pick-up in which they were travelling lost control at Khahnar and overturned.
The government announced an ex gratia of Rs 50,000 to the next of kin of each of the deceased and Rs 10,000 to each injured person.
The vehicle coming from Mooknor village was proceeding towards Saipung PHC for eye check-up conducted by Bansara Eye Clinic.
The chief minister said the accident was due to extremely bad road condition and rash and negligent driving. Besides, the vehicle was carrying 40-45 passengers. The driver identified as Kyrshanlang Lamurong (24) from Mooknor village is absconding though police made attempts to arrest him.
An FIR was registered against the driver under Saipung police station and the case was taken under various sections of the IPC, which include 279/337/338/304(A)/427.
The chief minister said that the Police department has been taking steps to avert motor vehicle accidents. Some of the measures taken are regular awareness programmes, including observation of the road safety week 2017, frequent checking of over loading and overcrowding vehicles, imposition of fines, check on drunken driving, speeding, driving without seatbelt and helmets among others.
In addition, frequent mobile courts were conducted by police and magistrates besides check on vehicles violating the motor vehicle rules jointly by police and officials of the Transport Department. The chief minister said the government is concerned over such traffic accidents and will re-enforce its plan and efforts to see that traffic accidents are prevented effectively.
“The efforts among others include sensitisation of drivers towards road safety and strict enforcement of law by police,” the statement said.
Local MLA Hopeful Bamon, who raised the issue in the Assembly, later told reporters that he would write to the State government to take up with the Centre on the need to extend ex gratia to the victims under the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund.
Earlier, the Prime Minister’s Office had sanctioned Rs 2 lakh to the next of kin of each of the deceased and Rs 50,000 each to the injured persons, who were the victims of the truck accident on February 26 in West Khasi Hills.
The accident resulted in the death of 19 persons and injury to 59 others.