Uttar Pradesh: 18 killed, 19 injured in bus-tanker collision on Agra-Lucknow expressway

Eyewitnesses said that the bus was traveling at a very high speed when it rammed into the container.
Last Updated : 10 July 2024, 02:36 IST

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Lucknow: Eighteen people were killed and 19 others injured when a bus carrying them rammed into a milk container on the Lucknow-Agra Expressway in Uttar Pradesh's Unnao district on Wednesday.

According to the police sources here, the mishap happened in the wee hours when the ill-fated bus was on way from Shivgarh in Bihar to Delhi.

Eyewitnesses said that the bus turned turtle after it rammed into the container and hurtled down several times before coming to a halt.

The impact of the collision was such that the police had a tough time in bringing out the passengers, who were trapped inside the bus, out of the vehicle.

Eyewitnesses said that the bus was traveling at a very high speed when it rammed into the container.

The injured were admitted to the district hospital in Unnao and the critically wounded were referred to the King George's Medical University hospital in Lucknow.

The Prime Minister's office later said that an ex gratia of Rs 2 lakh would be given to the next of the kin of the deceased while the injured would be given Rs 50 thousand each.

Almost all the dead were residents of Shivgarh in Bihar. Police said that those who escaped unhurt in the incident were sent to Delhi by another bus.

Additional Director General of Police, Lucknow, S B Shiradkar told PTI that 14 men, three women and a child were killed in the accident.

Bangarmau Circle Officer (CO) Arvind Kumar said due to the collision, both the bus and milk tanker overturned. Drivers of the two vehicles were among the dead.

Glass shards and people's belongings lay scattered on the highway next to the overturned bus and milk tanker. Cranes were used to put the two vehicles back on their wheels and they were later towed away.

The impact of the collision left the front portion of the bus badly mangled with one side ripped open.

"We were sleeping. I don't know what happened," Mohd Shamim, a passenger who sustained head injuries in the accident, told reporters at the hospital.

Another passenger, Dilshad, lost six of the eight family members he was travelling with.

"We were sleeping at the time of the accident and woke up to find ourselves trapped inside the bus. Those who reached the spot were busy recording videos instead of helping," Dilshad said.

He said the bus driver was speeding all night.

Later, Dilshad identified six members of his family -- Ashfaq (45), Ruby (40), Gulnaz (12), Suhail (4), Sonu (32) and Soni (28) -- in the post-mortem house.

Four other deceased were identified as bus driver Ekhlaq (49), milk tanker driver Sunil Kumar (35), Deepak Kumar (27) and Shivdayal (28).

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said officials have been instructed to ensure the best treatment for the injured.

"The loss of lives in a road accident in Unnao district is extremely sad and heartbreaking. My condolences are with the bereaved families," he said in a post on X.

"District administration officials have been instructed to reach the spot and expedite the relief work. I pray to Lord Shri Ram to grant a place to the departed souls at his feet and for the speedy recovery of the injured," the chief minister said.

President Droupadi Murmu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled the loss of lives in the accident.

In a post on X, Murmu said, "The news of the death of many people in a road accident on the Lucknow-Agra Expressway in Unnao, Uttar Pradesh is extremely sad. I express my deepest condolences to the family members of those who have become victims of such sudden death and wish for the speedy recovery of those injured."

"The road accident in Unnao is extremely painful. My condolences to those who have lost their loved ones in this (accident). May God give them strength in this difficult time. Along with this, I wish the injured a speedy recovery," the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) quoted Modi as saying in a post on X.

Modi said the local administration is extending all possible help to the victims under the supervision of the state government.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge expressed grief over the incident and urged the administration to provide all help to those affected.

"The news of the death of 18 people in a tragic road accident on the Lucknow-Agra Expressway in Unnao, UP, is extremely saddening. We express our deepest condolences to the bereaved families of the victims," he wrote on X.

Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav posed a series of questions to the BJP-led state government over the incident.

"Where was the highway police? Was regular patrolling not being done? How long did it take for the highway ambulance service to arrive after the accident and what was its role in relation to the casualties?" he said.

Crores of rupees are collected on the expressway every day. Is this money going somewhere else instead of being spent on management of the expressway, he said.

BSP president Mayawati said the news of the Unnao accident was extremely sad and measures must be taken to prevent such incidents in future.

According to an official release, the district administration has issued helpline numbers -- 0515-29707662, 0515-2970767, 10774 (toll-free), 96514327035, 94544174476 and 8081211297.

(With PTI inputs)

Published 10 July 2024, 02:36 IST

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