The complainant in the December 8 Aston Martin accident case has reached a settlement with Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) and withdrawn her case after the firm agreed to replace her damaged vehicle with an upgraded Audi A6, a source close to her family said.
No one was seriously injured when the Aston Martin Rapide collided into an Audi A4 owned by Ghatkopar resident Foram Ruparel near Prabhu Kunj building on Pedder Road when she was going back home with three other friends, the police said.
Ruparel’s car veered into the opposite carriageway and hit a bus while the Aston Martin continued ahead and rammed into a Hyundai Elantra being driven by Thane-based pharmaceutical executive Vikram Mishra, who was travelling with five family members and friends.
The source close to Ruparels said the family was thankful to the driver of the bus, who veered away in time to avoid a deadly collision. “The bus driver turned sharply to the left to avoid hitting Ruparel’s car head-on. But for his presence of mind, they would not have escaped with minor injuries,” he said, adding that the car’s airbags had failed to deploy.
He said RIL representatives contacted both Ruparel and Mishra the very next day. “We were willing to settle with them because Ruparel and her friends were fine. The company did not even apologise to us for the first three days. It is only when we threatened to go on a hunger strike that they called us again on December 11. In the next three days, we settled and they agreed to give us an Audi A6 on the condition that we withdraw the case and not speak to the press,” he said.
An application was filed in the Bombay High Court on Monday to withdraw charges, the same day Ruparel recorded her statement before a magistrate. The car was delivered to the Ruparels a day later.
The family is more than happy with the Rs 65-lakh replacement. “The new car is a corporate model and has two television screens inside. We bought the previous car a year-and-a-half ago for Rs 45 lakh. There is no sadness at seeing it gone,” he said.