Can’t drive? Can’t swim? Can’t behave?

ARVIND SWAMINATHAN writes from Madras: Apologies for restoring “normal service” on churumuri so soon after the dawn of the new year, but I couldn’t help noticing the common strand in the following news items, three of which have appeared in the last 24 hours.

MYSORE: Three persons, including Umesh, a software engineer, were killed on the spot and two others were injured when their car went off the road and hit a tamarind tree in a field near Ganangur in Srirangapatna on Mysore-Bangalore Highway in the early hours of today. (from Star of Mysore)

MADRAS: The New Year eve revelry took a nightmarish turn for some 40 people in a Madras hotel when a makeshift wooden platform they were dancing on, caved in and they fell right into a 12-feet-deep swimming pool. Sumit Agnihotri, a software engineer, died and one youngster is said to be critical. (from NDTV)

BANGALORE: A pillion rider was killed when a motorcycle, being ridden by a software engineer, rammed into a road median, while they were allegedly trying to escape a police check on drunken driving (from The New Indian Express)

HYDERABAD: A teenaged girl is battling for life after she was attacked by a youngster, a software engineer by profession, in Narayanguda. The youngster admitted to having a ‘pathological’ hatred for women talking to men, the police said. The assailant identified as Vijay Kumar, was overpowered and thrashed by passers-by, before being handed over to the police. (from The Hindu)

Obviously, we should not make fun of the dead. Especially the young. But the authors of Freakonomics might have a good explanation for why we are seeing so many mishaps involving “software professionals”.

Is it just a coincidence? Is it because there are so many of them around in the southern cities that the statistical possibility of their being involved in a mishap is higher (which in a way is a validation of the IT argument)? Is it because the media are beginning to take closer notice of their target audience? Or, cruel me, is it because, while they may be earning pots, they still haven’t mastered driving, swimming, sitting or behaving?

Also read: Why don’t we hear of IT men excelling in sports?