71 killed as truck falls into gorge in Himachal Pradesh
At least 71 members of a marriage party were killed and 10 injured when a truck carrying them fell into a 250-ft-deep gorge in Hamirpur district in Himachal Pradesh on Thursday night.
A magisterial inquiry, headed by Hamirpur additional district magistrate L S Chaudhary, has been ordered into the accident.
Official sources, however, put the toll at 66. While 45 people
died on the spot, others succumbed to their injuries at the Hamirpur
district hospital where the injured were admitted, they said. One
of the six seriously injured, who were rushed to a hospital at
Chandigarh, died on the way, they said. The deceased included women
Hamirpur superintendent of police Sanjeev Ranjan Ojha said
that the toll was likely to go up as some bodies were still lying
under the ill-fated truck which was badly damaged in the accident.
The truck carrying more than 80 people fell into the
gorge called Kasota Nala near Gudwin village, eight km from
Hamirpur town, when the driver reportedly lost control over
the vehicle while negotiating a curve, official sources said.
The marriage party from Baroha village was bound for Bihad
village in the district, they said.
Hamirpur police chief, deputy commissioner and other senior
officials rushed to the spot to launch rescue operations. The
district administration has announced ex-gratia payment of Rs 25,000
each to the next of kin of the deceased and Rs 5,000 each for the