Police have tracked down and arrested a 22-year-old student who had allegedly rammed his SUV into an auto-rickshaw, causing the death of two people on the Western Express Highway (WEH) in Goregaon (East) early on Thursday.
The police identified the accused as Govindham Yadav, 22, a resident of Bhiwandi. He was arrested early on Friday by the Vanrai police and produced before a magistrate court where he was granted bail.
An auto-rickshaw driver, Rohit Pandit, 23, and his 48-year-old passenger, identified as Jinoy Molakpalli, died of grievous injuries in the accident. Two other men on a bike also suffered multiple injuries after the speeding SUV driven by Yadav on the south-bound stretch of the WEH jumped the divider and crashed into the three-wheeler and the bike moving on the north-bound stretch. Yadav fled from the spot, claimed police.
The incident took place around 1 am on Jay Coach flyover.
The complainant, Sachin Kaku, 42, a Bhayander resident, was heading home on his bike from his workplace in Marol, Andheri while his friend Varun Shetty, 53, was riding pillion. According to police, Kaku was riding his bike behind an auto-rickshaw when a speeding Ford Ecosport car jumped the divider and crashed into the two vehicles. Kaku and Shetty were rushed to a nearby hospital. While Kaku suffered injuries to his right shoulder, chest and back, Shetty suffered injuries on his face, right hand, knees and waist, the police said.
Yadav had rented the vehicle from a car rental company. He was staying as a paying guest in Vile Parle and was returning home after visiting someone in Borivali, police said. Due to the airbags fitted in his car, Yadav suffered minimal injuries in the mishap, they added.
Molakpalli, a resident of Kandivali (East), used to work for a German company, while his wife is a bank manager in a leading private sector bank. The couple has a 17-year-old daughter and an eight-year-old son.
Pandit’s brother took his body back home to Uttar Pradesh for completing his last rites, police said.
An FIR has been registered against Yadav for rash and dangerous driving, causing death due to negligence, causing grievous injury and escaping from the spot without helping the victims or surrendering before the police. When asked if Yadav was in an inebriated condition, a police officer from Vanrai police station pointed out that as he was arrested over 24 hours after the accident, it could not be ascertained. “We will perform a medical test on him,” the officer said.