Nadia: A damaged truck following a road accident at Phulbari area in Nadia district, West Bengal, Sunday, Nov 28, 2021. At least 18 people were killed and 5 others injured Saturday night while the matador they were travelling in met with an accident on the way to a crematorium.
A goods carriage carrying passengers collided head-on with a truck in the Hanskhali area of Bengal’s Nadia district around 2am on Sunday; at least 18 people, including eight women, died and six were injured in the accident, police said.
The truck, which was carrying stones, was parked by the road, police found during investigation.
Passengers travelling in the goods carriage were residents of Bagdah in North 24 Parganas district. They were going to a crematorium at Nabadwip in Nadia with the body of an elderly woman from Parmadan village.
“Since the accident took place in the dead of the night there were not eyewitnesses. The goods vehicle came from the opposite direction and rammed into the truck parked by the road. Eighteen people have so far died. They were carrying the body of an old woman for cremation. Police have started an investigation,” said Sayak Das, Superintendent of Police, Kalyani police district in Nadia.
Prasenjit Das, 20, the driver of the goods vehicle, died at the spot and a man who was sleeping inside the stationary truck suffered minor injury, police said.
Police have seized the goods vehicle.
Das might have been tired and could not spot the truck because of fog, said a police officer who wished not to be named.
“I talked to the driver’s assistant. He said the driver might have fallen asleep,” said Bidhan Chandra Das, one of the passengers of the ill-fated vehicle who miraculously escaped the accident, and added that five of the deceased were members of the elderly woman’s family and rest were her relatives and neighbours.
The injured were shifted to a local hospital.
Bengal minister Jyotipriya Mallick met the families of the victims at Parmadan village in Bagdah and also announced a compensation of ₹2 lakh for the nearest kin of every victim.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, Union home minister Amit Shah and West Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar expressed their condolences to the bereaved families.
The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) tweeted late in the afternoon: “The Prime Minister has announced an ex-gratia of ₹2 lakh each from PMNRF for the next of kin of those who have lost their lives due to the road accident in Nadia, West Bengal. ₹50,000 would be given to the injured.”
“Heartbroken to hear about the road accident in Nadia. I offer my deepest condolences to the bereaved families and pray for the speedy recovery of those who were injured. May God give them the strength to get past this difficult time. Government of West Bengal will extend every necessary assistance and support to the kin of the victims. We are beside you in this sad hour,” tweeted Banerjee.
On Twitter, Shah stated “The road accident which took place is extremely unfortunate. I express my condolences to the families of those who lost their lives in this accident. May God give them the strength to overcome the loss. I wish the speedy recovery of the injured people.”
West Bengal governor tweeted: “Deeply pained at reported death of 18 people and 5 others injured in Nadia District after the vehicle they were travelling in collided with a truck parked on the side of road. Expect all efforts @MamataOfficial to the family of deceased and injured. Need to promote Road Safety.”
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