In a complaint filed before the Pala KSRTC station master, a man has alleged that his fellow passenger who questioned a driver who stopped a night-time bus from Ernakulam midway to talk to his friends, was allegedly beaten up by the driver. The victim ran away from the spot unable to bear the shame of being beaten up in public, a Facebook post by Balu Mahendra, the petitioner, said.
Balu says he witnessed the episode during his journey to Pala in Bus no. RSA 869, a Fast Passenger that left the Vytila hub at 7:50 PM on December 24. He slept off in the bus, but was awakened by loud arguments of other passengers who were protesting against the driver, for stopping the bus at Thalayolapparambu and was talking to some of his acquaintance. The angry passengers complained to the lady conductor that the bus was already late and it would be difficult for them to get a connection bus if the service was further delayed. However, she told them that she was helpless, following which one of the passengers used abusive language to ask the driver to get back in the bus.
Following which the driver returned to the bus. However, he halted the bus again and dozed off, triggering fresh arguments. Not long after this, the man, who had earlier questioned the driver, got down at Ettumanoor Mahadeva Temple but was followed and brutally beaten up by the driver.
"Some of us decided to question his action but had to back off as many women passengers requested to avoid any further trouble as they were getting very late. We contacted the KSRTC control room in Thiruvananthapuram and the office of Tomin J Thachankary (KSRTC Managing Director), who asked us to file a written complaint with the station master in Pala," the post read.
Balu concluded by saying that the man who got assaulted is yet to be identified, but he has been regularly contacted by several union leaders from the transport corporation, asking him to withdraw the complaint.