Why is rage travelling on Indian roads?


The word ‘intolerance’ has seen a lot of hype in the recent past. And somehow while thinking about the growing road rage incidents in India, intolerance is the only word that comes to my mind.

Recent road rage incidents that have made headlines have confirmed the fact that we Indians have become so intolerant that we lose our tranquillity at the petty things life throws at us and not only this, we are becoming so intolerant towards other humans that we brutally kill them if they do not behave the way we want them to.

road-rageWhat’s happening to a nation that was once considered the land of saints, compassion and spirituality? Why has it turned into the land of anger, ego and hurt? What’s happening to India?

Now is not the time to begin a blame game and start accusing co-passengers, colleagues, traffic, situations or events in life, rather it’s the time to take a pause from this fast running life, peek into our inner selves and indulge in some self-recreational processes.

Due to ever growing stress and pressures, somewhere we have lost our own true selves. It’s time to bring that back and become more composed, more compassionate and more human. That’s the only escape route to be followed if we are serious about ending this horrific killer — the Road Rage.

The month of September has seen at least four cases of road rage killings wherein precious lives were taken over frivolous reasons. From a colonel in the Indian Army to a student, all the killers were not equipped to handle the momentary furore they experienced on the road and killed fellow travellers for reasons as small as arguing over parking space, bruising their vehicles, overtaking and even for speaking against urinating or smoking in public.

And mind it, Delhi is not the only city which witnessed these heinous crimes. Violent incidents of road rage have also been reported from Chandigarh and IT hub Bengaluru.

Gurpreet Singh was killed near AIIMS

In a recent case of a road rage murder, a budding photographer, Gurpreet Singh, was killed on the intervening night of September 17-18 near AIIMS in New Delhi. The fault of Gurpreet, who was just 21-years-old, was that he had asked a passerby to not smoke in public.

Yes, unbelievable, isn’t it? But this is the only reason for which a young student was killed. He was a student of Delhi College of Photography and was out on an assignment to shoot a documentary on homeless people near the AIIMS hospital.

Gurpreet was with his friend Maninder, according to whom they had stopped to eat at a roadside eatery when an advocate named Rohit Mahanta was smoking nearby. When smoke from the cigarette was getting blown into their faces, Gurpreet objected to his public smoking which led to a heated argument between the two.

After this, Mahanta who was reportedly drunk at that time followed them and intentionally hit Gurpreet’s motorcycle with his car. He also hit an auto-rickshaw and a cab before his own car came to a halt. Maninder, who was also injured, took Gurpreet to AIIMS Trauma Centre where he succumbed to his injuries three days later.

Since this incident, my thoughts are going into a spiral loop to find out the reasons and the solutions to curb people’s deadly companion on roads – their rage. Had Mahanta shown some basic courtesy and crushed his cigarette and ego instead of crushing Gurpreet, a life would have been saved.

Due to ever growing stress and pressures, somewhere we have lost our true selves. It’s time to become more composed, more compassionate and more humane

A country can progress with a scarcity of natural resources but no nation can grow without serene and clearheaded masses.