After boy’s death at Elante Mall, Chandigarh admn puts all joyride zones under safety lens - Hindustan Times
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After boy’s death at Elante Mall, Chandigarh admn puts all joyride zones under safety lens

ByNaina Mishra, Chandigarh
Jun 25, 2024 08:20 AM IST

Chandigarh administration has entrusted the additional deputy commissioner with examining the safety regulations of all joyride and gaming arcades

Springing into action after the tragic death of an 11-year-boy while riding a toy train at Nexus Elante Mall, the UT administration has intensified safety inspections at all joyride zones in Chandigarh.

The fateful toy train impounded by the Chandigarh Police. (HT)
The fateful toy train impounded by the Chandigarh Police. (HT)

The administration has entrusted the additional deputy commissioner with examining the safety regulations of all joyride and gaming arcades.

Deputy commissioner Vinay Pratap Singh said, “Police have already lodged an FIR to investigate this tragic accident. The ADC has also been asked to examine the safety regulations for gaming zones at Nexus Elante Mall specifically and other areas of Chandigarh as well.”

Currently, there are no safety inspections and monitoring of rides at the mall by local authorities, raising concerns about the overall safety measures in place.

Family alleges absence of safety features in train

Meanwhile, the devastated family of the deceased, Shahbaz, who hailed from Punjab’s Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar district, alleged they won’t have lost their son had the toy train been equipped with basic safety features, such as window grilles and seat belts.

Their absence led to Shahbaz falling out and getting trapped underneath the train compartment, when it toppled while navigating a turn, they said.

“Proper safety barriers could have potentially prevented this incident. The toy train’s wheels were too small, and there were no seat belts or window grilles,” said Jatinder Pal Singh, the paternal uncle of the deceased boy, questioning the safety protocols.

Shahbaz, the deceased. (HT)
Shahbaz, the deceased. (HT)

No ambulance at mall: Family

The boy’s family further claimed that they had to rush Shahbaz to the hospital in their own vehicle, as no ambulance or first-aid was provided on the spot by the mall authorities. Shahbaz was rushed to Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, with severe head injuries. But he died during treatment.

The boy’s uncle alleged that the incident occurred due to the negligence of toy train driver Sourav, a resident of Bapu Dham Colony, Sector 26.

Personnel from the Industrial Area police station arrived at the hospital and after initial investigation confirmed the family’s account, and identified potential negligence on the part of the toy train driver and the management of Pixie Land Company, the company operating the amusement area.

Thus, a case under Section 304-A (causing death by negligence) of the Indian Penal Code was registered against the driver, management of Pixie Land Company and Nexus Elante Mall for failing to ensure safety of the amusement ride.

The driver was arrested on Sunday and later bailed out.

A spokesperson for Nexus Elante Mall claimed their emergency response team rushed the victim to a hospital and the local police station was informed immediately. “We are fully cooperating with local authorities in this regard and deeply sympathise with the family,” the spokesperson added.

Police said they will investigate whether the toy train was ISO certified, and examine the contract between Nexus Elante Mall and Pixie Land Company.

CCTV footage shows boy leaning out of train

Shahbaz, along with his mother, uncle and his wife, had arrived in Chandigarh from Siana village in SBS Nagar to spend the weekend at Nexus Elante Mall.

In the CCTV footage recovered by police, Shahbaz is seen leaning out of the last compartment of the toy train while the vehicle was taking a turn. As it toppled to the right, he was trapped underneath, suffering severe head injuries. A toddler and a four-year-old boy were also in the compartment at the time of the accident, but escaped unhurt.

A CCTV grab of the victim, Shahbaz, leaning out of the train compartment’s window before it toppled. (HT)
A CCTV grab of the victim, Shahbaz, leaning out of the train compartment’s window before it toppled. (HT)
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