An auto passenger, whom her speeding BMW hit, succumbs to injuries

A woman passenger, who was grievously injured when her autorickshaw was knocked down here by an inebriated driver, also a woman, of a BMW, succumbed to her injuries on Friday. But the police booked the 32-year-old wife of a wealthy businessman, Aarto Shetty, under a bailable section of the IPC. “We have added 304(A) [causing death by negligence] to the case against Ms. Shetty. A local court has already granted her bail. Since she is already out on bail and this is also a bailable section, we have not re-arrested her. She is also injured and is undergoing treatment for a fractured collar bone,” a senior police inspector of the Mankhurd station told The Hindu.

The accident

Early on Thursday morning, when Ms. Shetty was speeding toward Navi Mumbai, her BMW hit an autorikshaw, which turned turtle in the impact. The car then hit a trailer before coming to a halt.

Mobina Zahir Hussain Syed (35), who sustained severe head injuries, underwent surgery on Thursday but she died.

The injured are Mohammad Raza Hussain Syed (19), Mohammad Hussain Ali Syed (44) and Nasir Abu Bakr Syed (30). All of them were travelling in the autorickshaw to attend the funeral of a relative.

Immediately after the accident, the police said Ms. Shetty was reeking of alcohol when they arrested her. On Friday, they, however, said “she was not under the influence of alcohol,” though she was drunk. Asked what it meant, the inspector said a doctor in the government-run Rajawadi hospital had issued such a certificate.

“It is this preliminary report which is preventing us from invoking Section 304(Part II) (culpable homicide not amounting to murder). But we have sent her blood samples for a medical test. After the chemical analysis report, we will come to know whether the alcohol content in her blood was beyond the permissible limit or not. We will then take legal opinion on whether we can book her under Section 304(Part II),” the officer said.

Ms. Shetty is a former journalist and wife of a prominent cement transport businessman in the city.

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