Dadarao Bilhore from Mumbai stops at every pothole he spots and fills it up with his bare hands from the debris he collects from a construction site. He doesn’t do it out of any obsessive disorder, but he has a reason behind it.
On July 28, 2015, Dadarao Bilhore lost his 16-year-old son, Prakash, in a road accident which happened because of the carelessness of civic officials and a private company who dug up the Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road (JVLR) for some construction work and didn’t cover the pothole.
And since then, he has been filling potholes to avoid any similar fatal accident for other two wheelers.
His son Prakash was riding pillion with his cousin Ram while returning after completing admission formalities at Navjeevan Education Society’s Polytechnic College in Bhandup when the accident occurred.
The bike hit the pothole which was submerged under water after a sharp spell of rain.
Prakash was tossed in the air and landed on his face and bled from his ears, nose and mouth. He was pronounced dead on arrival at Holy Spirit Hospital.
His cousin Ram survived with some head injuries.
On being asked about the reason for filling potholes, Bilhore said,”My son would not have wanted this to happen to anyone else. He was a very good boy, smart, intelligent and full of life. I will continue my fight to ensure that the people whose negligence led to his death are punished. But I don’t want others to suffer like I did. I want to make our streets safer.”
Bilhore, who is a vegetable seller by profession has inspired other through this selfless act. Now, people from his area join him by handing him paver blocks to fill up the potholes, providing sacks to collect debris etc.
The FIR was filed under sections 304A (causing death due to negligence) and section 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life) of the Indian Penal Code. It has been six months since the accident and yet no justice is served.
“It took me six hours to register an accidental death report and three days for the Aarey police to register an FIR. Then it took them another five months to zero in on who was guilty, but they are now out on bail. Every second day, I call up the police station asking why the charge sheet has not been filed yet. They keep saying it will be done next week. It really makes you lose faith in the system,” said Bilhore.
Senior inspector Vilas Chavan of Aarey police station said “It is a case of negligence by both parties. A BMC official and a Tata engineer were arrested but they were released as they had applied for anticipatory bail. The charge sheet will be filed this week.”
The accused are currently out on bail.
We want to salute Dadarao Bilhore for his perseverance and selfless work.
We hope his son gets justice as soon as possible.
News Source: Mumbai Mirror