Friday, June 12, 2015

Janhavi Gadkar : Materially Successful but Morally Bankrupt

Post economic liberalisation, India has young population many of them are professionally successful and are upwardly mobile. Who work hard party harder. Janhavi Gadkar was one such people. Vice President at 35, in one of the biggest companies in India. Young and beautiful. Driving a good car, drinking whisky returning home late. She had everything material, but not her moral compass.

On 9th June, 2015, corporate lawyer Janhavi Gadkar partied with her friends. She then drove under the influence of alcohol on the wrong side of eastern expressway, slammed her Audi car at 120 km/hr into a Maruti Omni taxi. Janhavi's state of the art car had air bag. She was saved but knocked unconscious. May be the effect of blood alcohol that was 4 times the permissible level. Her victims were not so lucky. Cab driver, Mohammad Sayyad, and one passenger, Salim Saboowala died, leaving behind two devastated families. It is alleged that the lawyer instead of helping, tried to bribe her way out.

What Janhavi did was wrong. She had many choices. She could have taken a cab. She could have asked her sober friends to drop her home. She could have stayed in a hotel overnight. Yet, she chose to drive home in an inebriated state. According to a version submitted to police, she had spent close to an hour on the marine drive. Was she drinking or she was waiting for alcohol to get out of her system? Still when she decided to drive home, she was so drunk that she not only missed her way she was not aware that she was on the wrong side of the expressway.

Janhavi, her family and her battery of lawyers, will try to present the case as an accident. They will claim she is a hard working, helpful and nice person. But these people have to be reminded that, Janhavi's victims too were nice people with family. Mohammad Sayyed had worked hard to raise and educate his kids. He was considered a safe driver, who never had an accident in his more than 30 years career. So was Salim Sabuwala. Sabuwala was returning home celebrating his sons high school graduation. 

This incidence cannot be regarded as an accident. Janhavi Gadkar of all people was a lawyer. She must know that driving drunk is an offence. She was also driving on the wrong side of the road. Her mistake has destroyed two families. She must be made to pay for killing two innocent people. She should be given two consecutive life sentences. She must compensate victims families for the lost income. She must be sacked from her job. Her licence to practice law must be revoked. She does not fit the qualification to become a lawyer. She has no rudimentary understanding of the rule of law.

I am sure very soon Janhavi will be out on bail. Her lawyers will argue it was an accident. Why only rich and wealthy are always targeted, when accidents happen daily on Indian roads. Like Sanjeev Nanda, and Alistair Pereira and many other rich and famous like them, a battery of lawyers will make the case drag on for decades. Eventually people will forget that it was an Audi not a truck that killed two people. It was Janak and not Jhanvi that was driving the car. Jhanvi's blood will come out without a trace of alcohol. Jhanvi will be back in her life. Get married, get promoted to become global head of legal team.

Except the families that lost two members have to live everyday with the memory. This is India. Life goes on. We need money and wealth, we need morals as well.

Tags: Accident, Alistair Pereira, Audi, Corporate Lawyer, Drunk Driving, Eastern Expressway, Janhavi Gadkar, Mohammad Sayyed, Salim Saboowala, Sanjeev Nanda

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