The Chennai traffic police on Sunday named All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam councillor C Jayagopal in a first information report in connection with the death of a 23-year-old software engineer. Subhashree died on Thursday after a political hoarding fell on her and then a truck ran her over.
Jayagopal is currently admitted to a private hospital in the city following complaints of chest pain.
The victim was returning home after work when the accident took place. Subhashree, who was riding a bike, lost balance after the hoarding fell on her after which a water tanker ran over her. The police have arrested the driver of the tanker.
The Madras High Court had on Friday lashed out at the AIADMK-led state government. The court was hearing a petition filed by activist ‘Traffic’ Ramaswamy against the Tamil Nadu government’s failure to remove illegal hoardings despite a High Court order. “The authorities have not followed the court’s orders pertaining to the banners,” the court observed. “Even after multiple warnings, nothing has been implemented. We cannot do the government’s job.”
“How many more deaths are the government and the authorities awaiting?” the High Court asked. The court asked Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami to make a statement to party cadre ordering them not to put up such hoardings, which Palaniswami did.
Tamil Nadu Advocate General R Muthukumaraswamy sought two days’ time from the court, saying that the police would take strict action against those responsible for putting up the hoarding.
A 30-year-old engineer had died in Coimbatore in November 2017 after an illegal hoarding fell on him, and a truck ran him over. Following this, the Madras High Court had ordered all illegal flex hoardings removed from the city.
In December 2018, the court directed that no political party, registered or unregistered, should erect flex boards that cause inconvenience to the public. On January 11, the Supreme Court issued a notice to the state government and to the Centre, directing them to restrict political parties from erecting digital banners. In March, the top court reiterated the ban on political boards in Tamil Nadu.
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