Before the incident on the Delhi-Meerut Highway, the bus driver went 7 km on the incorrect carriageway.
A tragic incident unfolded on the Delhi-Meerut motorway when a bus driving on the wrong side of the road collided head-on with a private vehicle, resulting in the loss of six lives. The bus driver has been apprehended and is now facing charges of culpable homicide. According to CCTV footage, the bus had been travelling on the wrong side of the road for over 7 kilometres before the accident took place near Behrampur in Ghaziabad at around 6 a.m. Officials from the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) provided details regarding the incident.
The heartbreaking accident was captured by CCTV cameras installed along Delhi-Meerut motorway. The footage, lasting 15 seconds, depicted at least two cars narrowly avoiding the bus, which was clearly on the wrong side of the road, before it collided head-on with a Mahindra TUV 300 on Delhi-Meerut motorway.
Authorities disclosed that the ill-fated private vehicle was carrying a total of eight individuals, six of whom tragically lost their lives. The deceased were identified as Narendra Yadav (45), his wife Anita (42), their sons Deepanshu (17) and Himanshu (14), as well as Narendra’s younger brother Dharmendra (40), and his wife Babita (37) along with their daughter Vanshika (8). Dharmendra and his son Kartik (5) were the sole survivors of the devastating collision.
The Ghaziabad police have filed multiple charges against the bus driver, identified as Prem Pal Singh, including culpable homicide not amounting to murder, attempted culpable homicide, and causing damages, as per the relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code.
NHAI officials expressed their inability to detect the speeding bus as their patrol vehicles were stationed at various locations and were unable to access the wrong carriageway to intercept the errant driver. Consequently, they placed the blame for the accident squarely on the traffic police.
An NHAI official, who wished to remain anonymous, stated, “The only way the bus could have been stopped was through enforcement by the on-duty traffic police. The vehicle entered the wrong carriageway at the 9.6-kilometre mark of the Delhi-Meerut motorway, near Indirapuram, and travelled at high speed until the 16.8-kilometre mark, which is the site of the accident. We have two patrol vehicles that are regularly on duty. However, these vehicles could not have crossed over to the wrong side of the road to intercept the bus, and they were not in the vicinity at that moment.”
The NHAI official referred to the CCTV footage from the motorway to determine the exact point at which the bus entered the wrong carriageway. They further explained that the authority could not deploy personnel at entry or exit points on the Delhi-Meerut motorway due to the potential risks posed by vehicles travelling at high speeds. The speed limit on the motorway is 100 km/h, and the NHAI official estimated that the SUV involved in the collision was travelling at approximately 90 km/h.
However, the Ghaziabad traffic police contradicted NHAI’s account, asserting that the bus had entered the wrong carriageway near Ghazipur in Delhi, approximately 9 kilometres away from the accident site. Police officers also revealed that the bus, which bore a Noida registration plate, had received 19 different challans (traffic violation notices) since 2018.
“The bus driver has been arrested, and an FIR has been lodged against him. We will ascertain the exact spot at which the bus entered the motorway as part of the investigation. We have encountered 19 different challans related to traffic violations in Noida involving this bus. The violations include parking on the wrong side of the road, driving without a seat belt, and overspeeding,” stated Ravi Prakash Singh, Assistant Commissioner of Police (Wave City).
The impact of the collision was so severe that the front of the Mahindra TUV was completely crushed. Emergency responders had to employ cutter machines to extract the injured individuals from the wreckage on Delhi-Meerut motorway.
Furthermore, it was revealed that despite the bus being painted yellow and labelled as a “school bus,” it was being utilised to transport employees of a private company. Authorities expressed concern over instances where school buses are misused to transport private company employees and assured that additional measures would be implemented to address this issue.
According to Suniti, the Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic) in Noida, several traffic violations involving a bus have been observed. Officials are currently investigating the background of the bus as well as the driver. The collision between the bus and a Mahindra TUV resulted in severe damage to the front of the TUV, which was completely crushed on Delhi-Meerut motorway.
The bus was reportedly driving at a high speed on the wrong side of the road when it collided with the TUV on Delhi-Meerut motorway. The impact primarily affected the driver’s side of the car. Both vehicles came to a halt following the collision, and the TUV was completely mangled, leading to the immediate deaths of six individuals. Rescue operations required the use of cutter machines to extract injured passengers from the car on Delhi-Meerut motorway.
In a separate statement, the Ghaziabad police revealed that although the bus was painted yellow and labelled as a “school bus,” it was actually being used to transport employees of a private company. This incident highlights a recurring issue where school buses are employed to transport private company employees.
The transport department in Noida regularly conducts campaigns to curb this practice, and further initiatives are planned to address the problem. Deepak Shah, the additional regional transport officer (enforcement) at Noida’s transport department, expressed the need for continued efforts to discourage the misuse of school buses for purposes other than ferrying students.