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Punjab: 18 killed in bus-train collision
December 14, 2007 10:16 IST
Last Updated: December 14, 2007 16:44 IST
Eighteen people were killed and 14 injured on Friday when the Satluj Express tore into a private minibus carrying mostly students and teachers at a manned railway crossing in Moga district.
The mishap took place at 8.22 am when bus driver Iqbal Singh forcibly got the railway crossing opened, Moga Deputy Commissioner Satwant Singh Johar and DIG of Police Ferozepur Range Ishwar Chand said.
As a thick blanket of fog had enveloped the area, the driver of the bus carrying around 30 passengers apparently could not gauge the distance of the approaching Ferozepur-Ludhiana Satluj Express, eyewitnesses and police said.
The bus, which was plying between Jagraon and Lopo village in Moga district, was dragged up to a distance of at least 20 mt by the train.
Sixteen people were killed on the spot. Two of the critically injured persons later succumbed to injuries at a hospital, taking the toll to 18, railway officials said.
The victims were mostly students and teachers on their way to different educational institutions in the area.
Most of the victims belonged to Nu Chur Chak village where the accident took place.
Eyewitnesses said the railway crossing at Nu Chur Chak village was closed as the passenger train was scheduled to cross through, but the driver of the minibus was apparently in a hurry and got the gate opened due to which the vehicle rammed into the train.