Public outrage as Indian Porsche-driving teenager ordered to write essay for allegedly killing 2

By Linh Le   May 23, 2024 | 06:58 pm PT
Public frustration in India mounts after a court assigned a 17-year-old Porsche driver to write a road safety essay as punishment for allegedly causing a crash that killed two motorcyclists.
A Porsche car. Illustration photo by Pixabay

A Porsche car. Illustration photo by Pixabay

The Straits Times reports that the accident took place in Pune on May 19, when the teenager, reportedly driving at high speed, crashed into a motorcycle. He was detained and later presented to the Juvenile Justice Board. After being granted bail, he was ordered to complete 15 days of community service and write an essay on road safety.

This ruling has triggered significant controversy, with critics arguing that the sentence is excessively lenient given the seriousness of the crime.

Devendra Fadnavis, Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra, the state where Pune is located, expressed astonishment at the ruling, referencing the 2015 amendments to India’s juvenile laws, which permit treating individuals older than 16 as adults in cases involving "heinous" crimes.

"According to [the] police, the boy is 17 years and eight months [old]," Fadnavis stated to journalists. "This is a heinous crime."

In light of the widespread uproar, the minor’s lawyer Prashant Patil informed reporters on Wednesday that the Juvenile Justice Board has amended the teenager’s bail conditions, mandating his stay in a rehabilitation facility until June 5, according to CNN. The minor will undergo counseling as well, added Patil.

Additionally, Pune police have started an investigation into the accident on charges of culpable homicide not amounting to murder.

The father of the teenage driver has been arrested for allowing his son to drive the vehicle.Furthermore, the owner and an employee of the pub where the teenager consumed alcohol have been detained for serving alcohol to a minor, as reported by The Times of India.

Authorities are also pursuing two more individuals in connection with the case.

Security camera footage captured shortly before the incident depicts the Porsche speeding on a crowded main street. The scene quickly captured public and media attention, with videos spreading across social media and local news outlets.

In India, the legal age to drive is 18.

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