After a gap of close to two years, the notorious auto rickshaw race, that took the life of a participant in 2019, took place on the Maduravoyal-Tambaram bypass during the early hours of Sunday. The police are trying to nab the racers with the help of vehicle registration numbers.
A video of the race, being circulated widely on message sharing platforms, shows two auto rickshaws speeding on the bypass and a few other auto rickshaws and more than 20 bikes accompanying them.
The headlights of the auto rickshaws were on and the vehicles were zipping past cars and buses on the stretch. The pillion riders on one of the bikes reportedly shot the video.
Police said the race began from Porur and was supposed to end in Tambaram. They claim that such races usually take place on the Maduravoyal Bypass Road, Vandalur-Minjur Road and Urapakkam.
“Many of them have whatsapp groups and most of them get into an agreement on the race terms including the quality of spare parts to be used. The prize money varies from a few hundred rupees to ₹ 10,000,” said a police officer.
While two auto rickshaws are involved in the race, many others from the gang accompany them on bikes and cars too. In 2019, a similar race held on the Tambaram – Puzhal Bypass Road claimed the life of one of the racers named Prabhakar, a mechanic. The Poonamallee traffic investigation police had made some arrests following the incident.
“We are trying to trace the people involved in the race using the registration number of vehicles. We will definitely take action against them. During the lockdown such incidents were not common as there was strict vigil,” said a police officer.