The inquiry revealed that only seven persons and a driver are allowed in a Maruti van.
New Delhi: A magisterial probe into the Saraswati Vihar road accident, involving a private Maruti van and a truck, in which one student was killed and 17 others injured on April 26 has revealed there were serious violations in respect of the registration of the van and the driver who was driving it.
Not only had the van’s registration expired in April 2017, but the driver was also drunk when he was ferrying the school children.
The probe revealed that the driver was driving the van on the wrong side of the road and took a left turn at the traffic signal from the wrong side which led to the major accident. A copy of the inquiry report accessed by this newspaper showed that the truck had been challaned by the traffic police nine times from 2013 to 2017. It was also found that the Maruti van was also challaned on February 3 by the traffic police, while as validity of its registration had already expired last year. The report said that the van should have been impounded on the day it was challaned.
The inquiry revealed that only seven persons and a driver are allowed in a Maruti van. But if it is a transport department authorized school van, it can carry 12 persons. But in the Saraswati Vihar case, it was an unauthorized van which was carrying 18 children in violation of the rules.
The report said that both the government schools, whose students were traveling in the van, do not operate any transport facility. As of now, it is the responsibility of the parents to arrange transport of their wards and school authorities have no direct role for transportation of their students. It said that for every 1 to 2 km, there is a government school available in Delhi and preferential admission for children within one km of school may be considered so that the engagement of private vehicle for transportation of students gets reduced.