29 dead as Delhi-bound bus falls into drain on Yamuna Expressway, several injured
At least 29 people were killed and several others injured after a Delhi-bound bus fell into a drain on Yamuna Expressway on Monday morning. The UP Roadways bus, which was on its way from Lucknow to Delhi, met with the accident near Agra.
"Awadh bus depot's Janrath Expressway Roadways bus no UP33 AT5877 lost control on Yamuna Expressway and fell in 'jharna nala' near Kuberpur," UP Police said in a tweet.
According to police sources, the bus had started from the Alambagh bus station in Lucknow at 10 pm on Sunday and had crossed the Lucknow Expressway and Inner Ring Road by 3:30 am on Monday. Around 4:30 am, the driver apparently dozed off and lost control of the bus.
At high speed, the bus slipped off the expressway and fell into the 30-foot-deep 'jharna nullah'.
Locals from the nearby Baghel Thar village were the first to react and were able to safely extricate 20 passengers from the partially submerged bus. The police, who arrived later, took the passengers to the hospital in ambulances.
About two hours after the accident, bulldozers and cranes arrived at the scene and the bus was taken out of the drain and cut apart to pull out the remaining passengers; however, all of them had died by then.
A total of 29 people, including a child and a woman, died in the accident and efforts are on to identify the bodies.
"The incident took place around 4:30 am. The driver probably dozed off and the speeding bus broke our barrier and fell into the drain. Search operations are underway," Agra District Magistrate NG Ravi Kumar told media.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has taken cognisance of the accident.
He has expressed his grief and condolences at the death of the passengers and directed DM and SSP to provide all possible medical attention to the injured.
UP CM has ordered an enquiry by a committee consisting of transport commissioner, divisional commissioner and IG Agra to investigate the incident within 24 hours and submit a report on the cause of the accident. A report has also been sought with long-term recommendations to avoid such accidents.
An ex-gratia amount of Rs 5 lakh has been announced for the kin of the deceased by UP Roadways.
"Pained by accident on Delhi-Agra expressway. May God give strength to the kind of the deceased, my condolences with the families. I pray for speedy recovery of those injured," Piyush Goyal, Union railways minister, tweeted.
Congress leader Sachin Pilot also expressed grief over the incident. In a tweet, Pilot said that the accident was painful and unfortunate. "I pay condolences to the families of those killed in the accident. May God give peace to deceased and quick recovery to those injured."