Dear Nikitha-May Your Soul ‘Rest In Peace’! Motorists May Your Driving be in ‘Lest and Ease’?

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Dear Nikitha-May Your Soul ‘Rest In Peace’! Motorists May Your Driving be in ‘Lest and Ease’?

Nikitha-May Your Soul ‘Rest In Peace’! Motorists May Your Driving be in ‘Lest and Ease’? A precious young life is lost due to a clumsy and careless driving of a Lady, who was distracted which resulted in this fatal accident. While DRIVING no matter what, your concentration should be JUST on driving ALERT, keeping in mind the SAFETY of YOURSELF and SAFETY of the CITIZENS on road.

“Nikitha, We will all think of you in silence. We often speak your name, now all we have are memories and your picture in a frame. Your memory is our keepsake with which we’ll never part. God bless you in his keeping, but we’ll always have you in our hearts and in our memories. You are sadly missed by everyone at St Aloysius PUC, your family members, relatives and friends. While we look at your picture, you seem to smile and say, ‘Don’t be sad but take courage, and love each other for my sake’. We will do that, we promise, Dear Nikitha Cutinha “

Mangaluru: Sea of mourners comprising of family members, relatives and friends thronged the Most Holy Redeemer Church-Derebail-Mangaluru, during the requiem mass at 7.15 am on Tuesday 10 April; and hundreds of staff and students of St Aloysius Pre-University College-Mangaluru gathered during a condolence meeting held on Monday, 9 April, to pay their last respect to the departed soul of young Angel 17 year-old Nikitha Cutinha, a II yr PUC student at St Aloysius PU College, who was knocked down by a clumsy, careless and speeding lady car driver, on 25 March 2018.

Nikitha’s mother, Noreen and Dad, Jerome Cutinha at the funeral mass

The accident spot, opposite to Derebail Church where Nikitha was knocked down by a speeding car

Nikitha who was admitted to AJ Hospital-Mangaluru after the ill-fated accident, remained in an unconscious state until Friday, 9 April when she breathed her last. It was indeed a tragic death for this innocent young soul, who never dreamt that end would come to her so soon, all because of a carelessness and recklessness of a lady driver from Bengaluru, who has an apartment in Mangaluru. This lady might have never done this intentionally, but while driving one has to be very careful by keeping the safety of yourself, and safety of others on the road.

The large gathering of people who attended the funeral mass showed how much they respected and loved Nikitha, who was very much known in the Derebail area and also at Church, due to her involvement in church and youth activities. The funeral mass was celebrated by Rev Dr Aloysius Paul D’souza-Bishop of Mangaluru Diocese, along with bevy of clergy namely: Fr Austin Peres and Fr Gratian Alvares- Parish Priest and asst Parish Priest respectively at Derebail,Church; Fr Santhosh Kamath of Fatima Retreat House, Fr Melwin Mendonca Sj and Fr John Lang Bosco Sj- Principal and Counsellor/Finance Officer respectively at St Aloysius PUC; Fr Ronald D’Souza- Director, Indian Catholic Youth Movement {ICYM}-Mangalore diocese, among many other priests.

After the mass at Derebail Church, Nikitha’s body encased inside a refrigerated casket was transported in a freezer ambulance to Christ the King Church, Manela in Bantwal, since her parents hail from that region. Speaking to Team Mangalorean,  Smitha Pereira- Physics teacher at St Aloysius PUC said, “Nikitha was very good and polite girl who had no issues with anyone. She was very approachable and was very obedient. She was always smiling and very active in many co-curricular activities and good in academics. We all miss her very dearly”.

Classmates of Nikitha of II PUC-PCBH, Miss Eve Menezes and Anisha Dsouza said, ” Among the very few good persons on this planet, we can say that Nikitha is surely one of them. She was a very innocent, calm, soft spoken and very lovable person to mingle with, although we didn’t have a chance, we always admired her character and nature. Too sad that a beautiful and innocent life is lost by someone else’s carelessness and ignorance. While thinking about Nikitha’s incident, we now fear to walk on the roads, because you never know when bad luck may strike us, because there are way too many reckless and ignorant drivers and riders out there on the streets, and the law has done not much to control it. May Nikitha’s soul rest in peace”.

While this article is dedicated to the departed soul of Nikitha Cutinha, it is also published to bring awareness among the motorists NOT to drive rash, recklessly and Carelessly, thereby putting citizens lives in danger. Now that Nikitha is dead, I am not sure how the lady driver feels about taking away the life a young girl who had so much planned for her future. Like Nikitha’s mother, Noreen ‘Cutinha’ Crasta had said earlier during an interaction with Team Mangalorean, “I and my husband are totally devastated. She is our only precious daughter, who is so smart and active in various academics and co-curricular activities. This tragedy shouldn’t have stuck her at this tender age. My humble request to all the motorists to think about themselves, their family members at home and also other citizens when they are behind the wheel, and not to drive/ride recklessly putting others lives in harm. I wish that no other parents have to go through what we are experiencing right now, due to the carelessness of a driver, which has put our innocent daughter in pain”.

While continuing further with this column, I only wish that all the motorists reading this emotional message from this heart-broken mother will take it seriously, and be careful while driving or riding. There are way too many accidents in Mangaluru, and all because of negligence, carelessness and rash driving or riding. While I speak about rash and carelessness, I too was knocked down off my two-wheeler by a speeding rider on his scooter-the impact was so hard, I was thrown to the concrete road, resulting in bleeding injuries. Was it my fault for being a careful rider for the last three years-definitely not. It was these two youngsters without helmets, no licence plates on the vehicle and riding rash are whom to blame.

When you look at the news in the media, the number of accidents due to rash driving in the city has nearly doubled in the last couple of years. The number of cases booked for rash driving too has doubled, as per police source. Young riders with high-speed motorbikes are among the major offenders in these cases. Like a cop said earlier in my article-“Around 70% of rash driving cases are booked on college students. Most cases booked against college students are for drunk driving, speeding and rash driving. When a two-wheeler goes out of control, it generally crashes into the median or pavement,” said the policeman. And that’s true- and I experienced it when I was knocked down by these rash young bike riders.

Now the ONLY WAY to stop accidents from happening, is strict laws, or seize the license…and fine them up to 10K…then see the difference. That’s the Only way to stop this idiotic driving. Many motorists don’t fear the police, simply because there is a way to escape. The reason strict laws won’t be implemented because many of the police can be bribed. And that’s the problem we are facing here- Corrupt cops and strict laws not being implemented. Strict enforcement of traffic rules is needed. How often do we see people riding with mobile phones glued to their ears? What about the reckless overtaking by private buses which race against each other? Yet another main cause of accidents here is over-speeding, overtaking from the wrong side, and drivers not taking into account our road conditions before speeding.

When we see or hear two-wheeler riders being killed in an accident, the first thing that comes to our mind “Bet the rider was speeding or reckless: and that’s true, when we witness the way some of the two-wheeler riders move on city roads. The loss of human lives in accidents has led to a blame game, which needs to be stopped. In conclusion, once again I want to stress is that in spite of the observance of Road Safety Week or the conduct of road safety awareness campaigns, accidents are still on the rise, and no one cares about it either. Carelessness stemming from unnecessary haste and lack of patience is the root cause of all accidents. Drivers are required to concentrate thoroughly during the whole journey. Places of public importance such as schools, hospitals, markets are areas where the speed of vehicles is to be controlled.

The pedestrians on the roads are to be permitted to use zebra-crossing by the speeding vehicles. It’s about time now, that traffic fines need to be increased, traffic police should be strict without showing partiality to anyone or not be corrupt accepting bribes, police should follow strict procedures as per Traffic section codes, and impound vehicles with repeated traffic rules violations or revoke their driver’s licenses. Only then we could see a difference and SAVE LIVES! Let the death of Nikitha Cutinha due to a faulty and clumsy driver bring awareness among rest of the drivers/riders out there to be careful and be at Ease!

I truly believe Nikitah Cutinha is at peace and is united with her dear ones and friends in heavenly bliss. I end this column with the lyrics from the hymn “Precious Lord” sung by Jim Reeves and also by Elvis Presley:

“Precious Lord, take my hand
Lead me on, let me stand
I’m tired, I’m weak, I’m lone
Through the storm, through the night
Lead me on to the light
Take my hand precious Lord, lead me home
When my way grows drear, precious Lord linger near
When my light is almost gone
Hear my cry, hear my call
Hold my hand lest I fall
Take my hand precious Lord, lead me home
When the darkness appears and the night draws near
And the day is past and gone
At the river I stand
Guide my feet, hold my hand
Take my…”

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1 Comment

  1. My prayers and condolences to Nikitha and her family. However, I think it’s inappropriate to specify numerous times in the article that it was a female driver who ran over. It was an accident and could happen to anyone. I do agree drivers need to careful. But it could happen even if it was a male driver behind the wheel. It’s a pet peeve for most people when they see a female driver.

    Rest In peace Nikita

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