Collision: Indian Army forced to compensate civil driver from own pocket

Pulwama: Indian Army personnel part of an administrative convoy Thursday were ‘forced’ to pool money to compensate the losses that a local driver incurred after his vehicle was allegedly hit by a ‘speedy’ Army vehicle in South Kashmir’s Pulwama district.

Eyewitnesses said that an Army convoy was on its way to Shopian district from Srinagar when near Muran Chowk in Pulwama town one of army drivers hit a parked Taveera (JK13B-8825). The six passengers on board had a miraculous escape; however, the vehicle suffered massive damage, forcing the local driver to seek compensation for the damage.

“The erring army driver locked the windows and refused to come out from the vehicle. However, the local driver didn’t budge and continued to demand compensation, though some army men tried to pacify him,” Witnesses told CNS adding that within no time, hundreds of locals cornered the army convoy and started raising pro-freedom slogans.

Witnesses said that Army exercised maximum restraint and didn’t retaliate. “Some youth climbed on top of the army vehicles raising pro-freedom slogans. Paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force personnel and Jammu Kashmir Police team headed by DySP Headquarters Farooq Ahmed rushed to spot to pacify the protesters who continued to press for compensation,” said witnesses.

They added that after the stalemate of an hour during which vehicular movement in the town came to standstill, Army men pooled Rs 10,000 and handed over to the local driver.

DySP Headquarter’s Pulwama said that the situation was handled carefully and matter was resolved amicably. “Army compensated the civil driver from their own pocket,” he said and confirmed that Rs 10,000 was handed over to the driver.

Srinagar based Defence Spokesperson Colonel Rajesh Kalia told CNS that: “an Army administrative convoy was returning from Srinagar when a civil Taveera vehicle hit one of the Army vehicles from wrong side. No one was injured. The matter was discussed and resolved on spot.”

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