A joyride after the exams turned fatal for three students of Christ University here when the fourth student, who was driving a SUV, lost control, hit the median and careened over it, collided head on with a lorry coming in the opposite direction before hitting a lamppost near Chandapura on Hosur Road Wednesday night.

The dead youngsters are Sanghita Banerjee (23), Sujana T.R. (24) and Asif Rasheed (24).The police said the driver, Darren Mathew Punnen (23), is in a critical condition in a private hospital.

The impact of the collision was such that the electric pole broke into two and the car was totally wrecked.

The second year law exams got over on Wednesday and the four decided to go on a long drive before going home for their holidays.

According to the police, the SUV (KA 01 HG 44), was tearing towards Hosur when it went out of control and crashed into the median on the elevated road near Chandapura at around 1.30 a.m. .

Sanghita, a native of West Bengal, died on the spot. Sujana, daughter of Raje Gowda, the Congress aspirant for the Sringeri Assembly seat, and Asif, a native of Kochi, died on way to hospital.

The survivor, Darren, is the son of Julius Punnen from Kerala, a doctor practising in the United States, police said.

Sanghita, Sujana and Darren were law students, while Asif was pursuing a hotel management degree at the university.

The bodies were brought to Victoria Hospital on Thursday for post-mortem and were then handed over to their families. Preliminary investigations revealed that Darren was being egged on by his friends to drive at high speed.

“We have registered a case, but are awaiting the post-mortem report to confirm whether the youngsters were under the influence of alcohol,” a police official said. But the police also are yet to record Darren’s statement.

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