Fifteen male passengers died and more than 40 sustained injuries when a bus – mostly carrying labourers heading towards Prayagraj for celebrating Diwali with their families – plowed about three to four feet into the rear of a truck during the intervening night on this district’s Sohagi hill in Sohagi Police Station limits, law-enforcement authorities said on Saturday.
Thus far, only a couple of the deceased have been identified as Raju Ansari (31) and Kaleem Khan aka Lallu (35) both of whom hailed from Kutraila in Uttar Pradesh’s Balrampur district. The lorry itself rammed another one that was ahead of it. Fourteen individuals perished on the spot whereas one succumbed while being rushed to this divisional headquarters’ Sanjay Gandhi Memorial Hospital where the other injured have been admitted.
Senior administrative and police officers reached the scene and supervised extrication of victims from the mangled vehicle. Traffic movement was affected during the rescue operation but restored by morning. Those aboard the ill-fated bus were natives of different places in Uttar Pradesh. They had travelled by another bus from Hyderabad to Jabalpur.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan expressed grief over the loss of life and directed the administration to ensure proper treatment of the injured. Mr Chouhan had a phone conversation with his Uttar Pradesh counterpart Yogi Adityanath.
“First aid was administered to those having minor injuries. Such persons were sent to Uttar Pradesh in another bus,” Mr Chouhan wrote in social media.