A Hold-Up On The Eastern Express Highway
December 12, 2013 Leave a comment
9:35 am: Cars are whizzing by in the ten lanes of the Eastern Express Highway.
A kilometer beyond the Ghatkopar turn-off, the outbound traffic in the five lanes squeezes itself into three lanes near the middle. Cars slow down momentarily only to smoothly swing into the lane on their right and pick up even more speed to catch up on the lost seconds. A car seemed to be involved in a fresh accident and is the cause for the traffic to veer away from the lanes on the left. A couple of guys seen standing at the spot trying to flag down a vehicle.
10-15 am: We’re on the Eastern Express Highway heading for Seepz.
We’ve passed the Ghatkopar turn-off behind us. The cars ahead of us don’t seem to move fast enough. Very quickly we find ourselves at the tail of a crawling procession of cars. After some ten minutes of generally blaming the state-of-affairs in the country, suddenly the scene comes into our view ahead of us.
We all fall silent, half getting up from our seats for a better view. The guy seated on the other side of the isle comes across, leans over smothering me with his smelly jacket, only the window-bars holding him back. The back of a silver gray Maruti Esteem is now visible. As we move forward like those tableaus in a Republic Day ceremonial parade, we see the Maruti halted on its way to climb up a light pole. Broadsiding the car, we have almost stopped. The windshield is all cracked up. The pole is sticking out of the bonnet at an angle. The dashboard is inches away from the driver’s seat. No one around.
‘There’s no way he could have survived, poor chap,’ the guy in smelly jacket concludes as he retreats.
There’s oil spilled, but I can’t see any blood.
We have to keep moving.
Ah, now the clog is behind us. We’re picking up speed mercifully.
The guy sitting next to me recalls a tragedy that befell his neighbor years ago.
With some luck, I may still be able to avoid the red mark on the muster.
2-30 pm: The after-noon edition of the City News reported the accident on the Eastern Express Highway beyond the Ghatkopar turn-off.
According to some motorists who called in, it is said to have happened at about 9 in the morning.
Credits: openclipart.com (drunken-duck) and Wiki