Just 6 months ago, when students of IIT-HOME celebrated Friendship Day together in a very different manner – befriending ‘Road Safety’, no one had thought that it would so soon save someone’s life. It was a joint session conducted by an NGO ‘Janakrosh’ and well known orthopedic, Dr. Ashutosh Apte at IIT-HOME to educate students about the importance of following traffic rules for their own safety. At the end of the session, students were made to take an oath that they will always follow all the traffic rules, wear helmet and drive safely. An apparently trivial promise, which ended up saving a life of a std. XII student at IIT-HOME, perhaps also a very important academic year for him. A local newspaper recently covered the complete story of the students, an excerpt of which is given below.
TIMES OF INDIA, Friday, 19th Feb Pg. 2
How helmet saved a Std XII student’s life
Abhishek Choudhari | Feb 19, 2016, 03.36 AM IST
If anybody has a doubt about the necessity of wearing helmets, meeting Std XII student Praharsh Deshmukh will surely change their mind. The only reason that Praharsh could appear for his HSC board exam on Thursday was because he was wearing a helmet on a breezy October morning last year when he met with a serious accident. A painful and long recovery process started bearing fruits only last month when he was able to start walking without support.
Recalling the near fatal moment, Praharsh, said, “It was just after 6 am and I was driving my two wheeler at maximum speed while on my way to tuitions. Suddenly a car came from a bylane and to avoid it I swerved colliding head-on with another vehicle. Though the other person escaped with minor injuries, my right leg was badly crushed. But thankfully, I did not suffer any head injury as I was wearing a helmet,” recalls Praharsh. Another lucky break Praharsh got was that his tuition mates were riding alongside and they helped him get medical assistance immediately. “I was operated at Sushrut Hospital and stayed there for over two weeks, after which physiotherapy continued. It was on January 18 that I was finally able to walk without any support and slowly am getting better,” said Praharsh.
Praharsh owes his survival that day to his coaching institute’s director Nisha Kothari. She had not just made all students take a pledge that they will drive two wheelers only after wearing helmet, but also ensured that it was strictly being followed.
“I made wearing helmet ‘mandatory’ last year itself keeping in mind safety of these kids. So on Friendship Day, I made them promise to look out for each other and implement the helmet rule,” said Kothari who owns IIT-Home.
Throughout his recovery period, Praharsh was wondering whether or not he would be able to appear for the exam. “Many relatives said that I should relax and appear for exam in 2017, but I did not want to waste a year,” said Praharsh. Finally when he appeared for his first HSC paper on Thursday, he did not forget to thank his helmet for it.
Ms. Nisha Kothari expressed gratitude to the entire team of ‘Janakrosh’ and Dr. Apte for conducting the Road Safety program at IIT-HOME.