TODAY -

Crammed in van 15 kids collapse
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, May 23 2013 : In what could be termed as corrobo-ration of serious concern fre- quently highlighted by the pa-rents regarding their young kids transported in an un-friendly manner by school van operators and other transpor-ters, no less than 15 students of a private educational institution lost consciousness inside a Maruti Van engaged for their transportation.

The disturbing development took place this morning as the driver found the kids in an unconscious state when the vehicle (MN1A/2638) stopped at the gate of the school - North Eastern English School, located at Khewa Bazar of Top Moirangkampu under Imphal East district.

Upon realisation, the dri-ver reportedly informed the school authority from where the kids were rushed to JNIMS hospital along with some school teachers.

Speaking to The Sangai Express, van driver Thon-gam Ramesh (20) s/o Th Thambou of Sanjenbam Sangshabi said he picked up the students from their respective homes in the same locality from around 9 am and filled 2 litres of petrol from a local shop on the way to the school.



Two out of 15 school children undergoing emergency treatment at the JNIMS Casualty Ward
Two out of 15 school children undergoing emergency treatment at the JNIMS Casualty Ward


Conceding that his vehicle had developed exhaust pipe damage about two days back, Ramesh opined leaking fumes from the damaged part might have been inhaled by the students.

Suffocation theory was also not ruled out by the 20-year who said that with the exception of the frontal section, windows of the rear compartment were shut as it was raining heavily on the way to school.

According to some of the students who underwent first-aid treatment and consequent- ly recovered at the hospital, a total of 18 students used to travel daily in the light motor vehicle with all 15 seated today in the back initially com- plaining of dizziness followed by some vomiting and others collapsing inside.

Describing conditions of the young students as stable doctors in emergency service at the Hospital's casualty ward, however, stated that many of them would have to remain under observation for some hours at the least.

Some of the kids who were supposed to appear in mid term examination of the school, have reportedly been discharged from the hospital.

Commenting on the incident, North Eastern English School principal Moi-rangthem Surkumar strongly deplored some transport operators not abiding to the general guidelines for safe travel.

Suggesting that the driver concerned carry student passengers within the limited capacity and conduct regular servicing of their vehicles, he desired that the drivers frequently monitor conditions of children.

Meanwhile, Manipur Alliance for Child Rights taking serious note of the incident, demanded that authority concerned invoke relevant sections of Motor Vehicle Act 1988 to pull up and punish all those responsible for endangering lives of the children.

Opining that the incident is a testimony of transport operators violating prescribed guidelines and carrying passengers 'beyond capacity', the child rights body said that a school children/students transport system need to be put in place and ensure its effective implementation.


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