A 19-year-old student from NKES College, Wadala, lost her life in a road accident at Wadala Bridge as she was heading home on Monday evening. The location of the accident was considered a blind spot, and authorities are struggling to determine the origin and disappearance of the bike that struck the victim.
The young woman, identified as Riya Gupta, was a class 11 student studying in the science stream. She followed a regular routine of leaving her home in Sangam Nagar, Antop Hill, for college around 1 pm, returning at approximately 7 pm. However, on the day of the incident, she opted to walk home instead of taking the bus as she typically did.
Father recounts ordeal
Riya's father, Vijaylal Gupta, explained the situation, stating, "A few weeks ago, my mother passed away, and we had some rituals at our house. On Tuesday, we had an event, and Riya may have rushed home to assist with the preparations. She often mentioned that it takes time to catch a bus, and even if she boarded one, it got delayed due to heavy traffic. That's possibly why she decided to walk that day."
According to the police, while Riya was attempting to cross the road, a motorcycle suddenly appeared and struck her, causing her to fall onto the road. Tragically, a BEST bus subsequently ran over her.
"The victim was crushed beneath the rear wheel of the bus. The driver mentioned that everything happened so quickly that he didn't notice it," noted an official from the Matunga police station.
Family member informed Gupta about tragic accident
Gupta received a call from a family member, initially informing him about the accident. "In the first call, I was informed that Riya had met with an accident. The second call, from my son, informed me that Riya was taken to KEM Hospital and requested her Aadhar Card from home. Upon reaching the hospital, police officers explained the situation to me, and I learned about my daughter's tragic demise," he said.
While the BEST bus driver remained at the scene and assisted family members and police officers with the investigation, the motorcyclist fled the scene. Initially, family members suspected that Riya was crushed by the front tire of the bus. However, during the examination of the bus, authorities discovered that it was the rear right tire that struck her. Bloodstains and flesh remains were found near the bus's right mudguard.
Accident site was blind spot
An eyewitness, a nearby motorist, described the impact from the motorcycle as severe, throwing Riya a short distance from her original location. Despite efforts to review CCTV footage from the bridge, the accident site was found to be a blind spot.
An official mentioned, "In the available footage, while the motorcycle is visible among the numerous vehicles, the vehicle's license plate is not discernible. We are conducting further investigations to obtain the license plate from CCTV cameras in other locations adjoining the Wadala bridge."
Bus driver booked but biker still at large
The BEST bus driver, identified as Ahmed Aslam Mirza, a 34-year-old resident of Tilak Nagar in Chembur, has been booked by the police and will be part of the ongoing investigation.
Emotionally distraught, Leela, the victim's mother, expressed her grief, stating, "That motorcyclist took my daughter from me, my precious daughter! And that individual is currently at large, driving recklessly, posing a danger to others. The police must apprehend this person, or he will harm more people, just as he did with my daughter."