In a shocking ruling by a magistrate court in Mumbai, a driver cannot be blamed for negligence if one is crossing a road where there is no zebra crossing or a signal and get run over.

26-year-old Vishal Walmiki was acquitted by the court on charges of negligence and rash driving after it found that the boy he ran over was attempting to cross the busy road outside the NSCI at Haji Ali in the absence of a zebra crossing.

According to the magistrate court, ‘the boy was crossing the road, not from the zebra crossing and there was also no signal pole where the accident happened. Under such circumstances, it cannot be said that there was fault or negligence of him.’

Interestingly, the court took 5 years to pronounce its decision in the case. The accident took place on the evening of October 23, 2012, in which the victim succumbed to his injuries the following day. While the matter went to trial before the court in March 2013.

Telling about how the incident happened back then, the main eyewitness and brother of the victim, in the court said, ‘the siblings along with their younger sister went out to buy groceries for the family. They attempted to cross the road and the vehicle hit his brother.’ He also said that the driver stopped at a distance from where he got a view of the offending vehicle.

Recalling the whole incident he further added, ‘after being hit, the child became unconscious. He was admitted to Nair hospital where is succumbed to his injuries the next day.’

The court further said, the brother has admitted that ‘his brother was in a hurry despite the constant flow of vehicles and heavy traffic.’

‘The witness also admitted that the accident had taken place due to negligence on the part of his brother,’ the court said.

The also court observed that the evidence on record did not reflect rash and negligent driving. “For that purpose specific cogent evidence is must but, the prosecution has failed to bring cogent evidence. In such circumstances, accused deserves acquittal,” the court said.