So many innocent children of Kangra have gone to heaven in that one fraction of a second. Some motorcycle suddenly appeared around the bend and the driver swirled the bus to avoid him. The driver could have dozed off also. The road must be bad and the driver was avoiding pot holes. The driver could be over speeding. The brakes of the bus could have failed. The driver could have been talking on his mobile also. No end to conjecturing. Finally, we have to leave it to the lines on our foreheads.
I can just grieve and offer my condolences to the bereaved families. I cannot get that time back just to reverse the bus a minute or two before the mishap occurred. Happy families shattered for no fault of theirs. The complete village would have plunged into darkness.
I am sure the school would have never thought of such an incident could ever happen. The driver would be probably one of the best, as no school would take chances with young lives, when the terrain and weather is known. Was the bus running late for school? The problem is punctuality which is taught in school. You get late and the gates are closed. Whom do we blame then, the circumstances, our values, the safety norms, the driving skills, the road conditions, the government or our destiny?
Will five lakhs promised by the government to the victims be enough to bring back the smile and laughter that kid used to bring home? Can those pranks, love and affection be replicated by money? Is that child replaceable in that amount? I say why double the amount can’t be spent on road widening and road safety. Is there a dearth of money or is it the lack of will? The latter might be the case.
What will be the after effects of this mishap? A committee will be set up to investigate the accident. The school may have to shut down is the most likely option. The findings will be sealed in a file and bite dust. Some road repair and construction work would be visible; some visits of high dignitaries will be executed; some reports will be generated; a monitoring cell would be opened; all schools and school busses will be audited; a new office with furniture and a vehicle will come up for a while and then like all “sarkari mehakmas” they will surface only after the next accident. God forbid it should never happen.
When bodies come home the cries of the beloved ones are inconsolable. A kind of current goes up my spine and my “rongte” (goose bumps) come up every time I think of the tragedy. A kind of shivering sensation passes through me, thinking of the unthinkable. Those children who have left us are now on their next journey but all those who are injured and critically ill, I think the country can at least pray for them.
Compensation to the injured should be even more. Their life time treatment should be free and they should also get a life time stipend to look after themselves. I know the idea sounds ridiculous and governments will go bankrupt paying for numerous accident and trauma cases. Well, that should be the penalty for not looking into the public amenities. This should be the price the governments should pay for the neglect and apathy towards the facilities of a common man. I don’t say accidents won’t happen but to create circumstances that accidents are negligible is also the prime responsibility of every government which represents me and my children.
The day I have to die is already destined but why pre-pone my destiny due to neglect and callous attitude of someone responsible. As it is loss of life in India is no big shake. Trains can roll without an engine. You run over pedestrians and still roam scot free. You call a protest for no reason, a stampede or firing occurs, a few dead here and there is no issue. You can fall in a drain, you can be hit at a red light even when your side is green and die, is as common as anything. It happens only in India.
When are we going to get out of this syndrome of chalta hai? India has to realise that every life counts. The people who run India, if they focus on the people they represent and their peoples safety, then they would be worth the salt they eat. If they have to continue their dharnas and bandhs for the heck of it then we can keep blaming our kismet, fate and destiny. Whom should I thank to be alive, my luck, my God or “Mai-Baap”? I wonder!!!!!!!!!!