Mohd Nisham was arrested yesterday by police in the southern Indian state of Kerala yesterday after a YouTube video of his son driving his Ferrari F 430 went viral a couple of weeks ago. The video showed not only the boy, who recently turned nine, operating the vehicle but his seven-year old brother in the passenger seat beside him. Apparently, the seven year old’s Bentley was in the shop for the day.
Outrage followed the video’s release, but one can guess that this outrage had nothing to do with the actual endangerment of the two children but rather a garish and wanton act of “I have a lot of money, and you don’t.” I’ve traveled around India quite a bit and for anyone who has taken a train or bus, hell, any transport in India, you will quickly see that child endangerment wasn’t the issue that sparked the outcry and indignation.
Two weeks ago Mr. Nisham’s wife had filmed the boy driving the high-powered sports car on his ninth birthday, while his 7-year-old brother sat alongside him in the passenger seat. To say that she was not at all ashamed of her and her husband’s actions would be the acme of understatement, she was proud.
“I am proud of him. He’s been driving since he was 5,” said his mother, Amal Nisham.
She said the boy has also driven the family’s Lamborghini and Bentley and other cars.
“It was his ninth birthday, and since he was insisting for months, we allowed him to drive the Ferrari. He is a cautious and confident driver,” she told television channel NDTV.
“It’s not easy for a child to achieve such a feat at this young age,” she added.
I love that eight year old kids can insist on driving a car whose value exceeds the daily income of a couple hundred thousand of his countrymen.
Mr. Nisham, who has a thriving tobacco and real estate business, was charged with two counts of child endangerment for allowing the child a drive on a private road. Mr. Nisham, who owns over $4 million worth of cars was released with his Ferrari on a bail of just shy of …. $190. I’m sure that financial outlay will make him think twice about committing these two heinous, non-jailable offenses in the future.