Prayers for Charu and Vikrant

Life couldn’t have looked better for Charu Khandal.  Just 28, she had recently won the National Award for Best Special Effects for the film Ra.One and her engagement was a few months away. 

Charu Khandal

All that changed yesterday. Early Sunday morning, while returning from a party she had thrown to celebrate the award, her auto rickshaw got hit by a speeding Honda City. She along with her companion were seriously injured. Charu suffered multiple fractures, her spine shattered in several paces. Doctors have told her family her chances of survival are slim. If Charu does pull through, she will be in a wheelchair.

You would think the driver of the Honda City, who according to reports had alcohol above permissible limits, would be in jail. In fact he was out on bail in just a couple of hours, for a measly Rs 5000 (US$100). 

India perhaps has the weakest law on drunken driving in the world. It is a bailable offence. You can get out on little as Rs 2000 (US$40) if you are a first time offender. No wonder then that every other day newspapers report  people dying in incidents of drunken driving, most of them poor pavement dwellers who have nowhere to sleep at night.

How many more incidents will it take before we campaign for a tough law on drunken driving?  What exists is a joke. Does something have to happen to people like us, our families and friends, before we speak out?  How many more Charus will it take?

18 thoughts on “Prayers for Charu and Vikrant

  1. Both the penalization of drunk drivers and handing of driver licenses is a joke in India. The ‘Indian’ way of driving can easily be attributed to inexperience & lack of a proper training. Hope Charu makes a full recovery

      • Honestly its yet again the system , from rape cases to murders to drinking and driving … every1 gets away with it because our system is not strict enough . The case goes on an on and the victim gives up ! The police should not leave the criminals !!!!!!!!!!!!
        P.S. Prayers for Charu and Vikrant !

      • True. Our laws seem to fail us when we need them the most. Cases take years to come up in courts, then they go into appeal..its endless. That allows criminals to get away repeatedly. Take the Alistair Perreira drunk driving case. It finally took a Supreme Court intervention to get him to jail, that too for such a brief time. And he killed what, seven people?

  2. First of all prayers of charu and vikrant for their fast recovery!!!! Our lawmakers should wake-up now, here is one of our national award winner girl fighting for life, her family, friends and all are upset with this accident and moreover response of police and administration regarding same incident!!! If one of lawmakers family will face same incident then only they will come to know what victim and his family expect from our law, government and administration!!! Ideally Drink and Drive should have 5 year prison and incase someone dies he should be sentenced for lifetime jail!!! the least a victim’s family expect

  3. This should become a campaign. Serious offense this is. Have spent time with Charu. May God give her strength to deal with this…

  4. So “one” KNOWN face meets with a serious accident and “drunk driving” offenders are the newest recipients of ‘internet-rage’. What about all the worse crimes happening in the city? “Honor Killings”, “forceful marriages”, “Gay Bashers”, “Rapes”, “Murders” ?????????

    Herd Mentality, is the main thing that is eating this country from the inside and even the optimist in me is currently holding a gun to his head and is waiting one for one more reason to pull the trigger….

    I pity you all!!!!

    • Hi Alan thanks for writing. Like I mentioned it is sad that it takes a known face, or for this to happen to “people like us” for such an outcry. The fact is that every year thousands of people in india die in incidents like these. And if we had tougher laws, tighter monitoring they could be prevented. Of course honour killings, rapes, gay crimes are shocking. And people there get away too. But that does not make this any less.

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