Student’s Fall To Death From Auto Rickshaw: Odisha Transport Minister Issues Warning to Schools

Berhampur: Taking stern note of the death of a five-year-old school student who fell off a moving auto-rickshaw while on way to school in Digapahandi area of Ganjam district, Odisha government today issued warning to schools and auto-rickshaw owners. The State Transport Minister, Padmanav Behera on Thursday said that those who are violating the ban and ferrying students in auto-rickshaws, strict action will be taken against them.

Moreover, Behera informed that the government may even think of taking action against the schools and putting a ban on them as well in case of such violations.

“While there are strict guidelines, several schools are violating the same. Such institutions should be banned. We will further discuss the matter and devise a policy to ensure that schools face strict action,” said Behera.

Ignoring the transport guidelines issued in 2016, auto-rickshaws are being massively engaged for ferrying school students, informed sources.

Furthermore, Behera has said that a stringent probe will be ordered into the death of the student in Digapahandi.

Earlier yesterday, a five-year-old private school student died after falling off an auto-rickshaw near Tileswar Ram Mandir while on way to school in Digapahandi. The student was reportedly rushed to hospital in a critical condition; however, doctor declared him brought dead. Irate over the incident, locals and family members of the deceased boy staged a road blockade on Digapahandi-Chikiti road. Protestors alleged that several schools have been opened in the region without requisite government permissions and vehicles without a required permit are ferrying children to schools.

The incident once again exposed the rampant violation of norms on transportation of school children. Despite stern guidelines for vehicles ferrying school students, lack of enforcement is leading to such mishaps again and again.