Drunk driving, overloading caused Jaintia Hills road mishap

15 bodies identified

From Our Correspondent

 KHLIEHRIAT: Initial investigations have revealed that drunken driving and overloading led to the road accident that left 30 people dead and 26 injured at Tongseng village in East Jaintia Hills district on Wednesday.

Thirty persons, including women and children died while 26 were critically injured when the Tripura-bound bus fell into a deep gorge along the NH 44 early morning on Wednesday.

At the time of the accident the bus was driven by the reserved driver Nivas Ch Ghosh (41) of Ranibazar (Agartala).

According to Abhishek Chandra, the District Magistrate of Unakoti, “Ghosh, who is presently undergoing treatment at Silchar Medical College Hospital, was completely drunk at the time of the mishap.

The main driver died in the accident.

According to sources, the ticket counter in Guwahati had issued only 36 tickets but at the time mishap 56 passengers were travelling in the ill-fated bus.

Meanwhile, out of the 30 passengers who died in the bus accident only 15 were identified on Thursday.

“Officials from Tripura who were camping in the district headquarter have identified as many as 15 of those who died either on the spot or succumbed to their injuries,” East Jaintia Hills Deputy Commissioner Abhishek Bhagotia said.

The district administration has set up a control room in Jowai where people can contact either through e-mail ([email protected]) or through telephone 0365-2220711 and mobile +91 94361-06342.

Officials have ruled out any fresh casualty on Thursday.

Meanwhile, nine bodies were taken to Tripura. The bodies Ranjit Kurmar Sah of Patna and Abhijeet Ghosh of West Bengal were taken to Guwahati airport. Both were employees of the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojna (RSBY).

The District Magistrate of Unakoti (Tripura) Abhishek Chandra, who arrived in Khliehriat on Wednesday, made all necessary arrangements for taking the bodies of the deceased to their native places.

Expenditure involved in transportation of deceased including those from West Bengal and Bihar is borne by the Government of Tripura. (With inputs from PTI)

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