'Agonising wait to collect bodies could be longer for kin'

Last Updated 31 October 2013, 12:37 IST

The agonising wait to collect the bodies of their near ones who perished in the bus fire tragedy in Andhra Pradesh that claimed 45 yesterday could prolong for their distraught relatives.

As the kin of the victims of the Volvo bus blaze in Mahbubnagar district struggled to come to terms with the loss of their dear ones, Karnataka Transport minister Ramalinga Reddy said only DNA test can establish their identities.

Reddy told a news channel that DNA samples of the victims in the tragedy had been collected and the process of identification could be completed once they are matched with their close relatives and the entire process would require more time.

"According to the addresses given by the victims we could make out that there were 24 from Karnataka... They were from Bangalore, Belgaum and other districts of the state.

 But because few of them have given Bangalore address and others have mentioned Hyderabad so it has become difficult for us to ascertain where they are actually from," Reddy told reporters in Hyderabad.

Talking on the compensation to the deceased families, he said, "I will speak to Chief Minister on this, let the process of identification and handing over of bodies be completed first."

Meanwhile, Volvo Bus authorities in a statement issued today described the mishap as an "unfortunate and tragic".

"At this juncture, we cannot represent the sequence or cause of the event as investigations are on by the relevant authorities," the statement said, adding, that "A team from Volvo would be also visiting to gather facts of this incident.

We will offer all cooperation to the authorities and agencies investigating this accident."Forty-five passengers were burnt alive and seven others suffered burns when the fuel tank of the bus exploded after hitting a culvert near Palem on the Bangalore-Hyderabad national highway early morning yesterday.

(Published 31 October 2013, 12:37 IST)

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