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National News
10 bus passengers electrocuted to death in Odisha
 
Berhampur: At least 10 people, including six women, were electrocuted and burnt to death while 22 injured when their bus came in contact with a power transmission line in Golanthara area of Odisha's Ganjam district on Sunday, officials said.

While five persons died on the spot, five others were declared dead at MKCG Medical College and Hospital here and at SCB Medical College Hospital in Cuttack, Ganjam District Collector Vijay Amruta Kulange and Berhampur Superintendent of Police Pinak Mishra said.

The dead included an 11-year-old boy who succumbed to his injuries on way to SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack, Emergency Officer of the hospital BN Maharana said.

Five other injured persons received by us are in a highly critical condition, he said.

The incident occurred near Mandarajpur when a part of the bus carrying around 40 passengers caught fire after coming in contact with an 11 KV power transmission line, Sub-Divisional Police Officer (SDPO) of Berhampur Sadar Jayant Kumar Mohapatra said.

Immediately after the accident, local people along with fire service and police personnel swung into action.

The blaze has been extinguished. Those trapped inside the vehicle have been rescued after disconnecting the transmission line's power supply, Chief Fire Officer (CFO) Sukant Sethi said.

He said preliminary information suggests that the luggage carrier of the bus came in contact with the transmission line along the road when the driver tried to give way to a two-wheeler on the narrow road.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik condoled the deaths and announced an ex gratia of Rs 2 lakh each to the families of the deceased. He also announced that free medical treatment would be provided to the injured, an official said.

State Transport Minister Padmanabha Behera said a thorough inquiry would be conducted into the incident and strict action would be taken against the guilty.

Union Petroleum and Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, who hails from Talcher in Odisha expressed shock over the incident and prayed for speedy recovery of the injured.

Seeking a thorough probe into it, Pradhan said concrete steps must be taken to prevent recurrence of such incidents.

Berhampur SP Pinak Mishra said an inquiry into the incident has been initiated and further action would be launched on the basis of the findings.

Power distribution agency SOUTHCO will examine the circumstances that led to the accident and appropriate action will be taken on the basis of their report, he said.

Odisha Power Transmission Corporation (OPTCL) CMD, Saurav Garg said, the SOUTHCO has been asked to give a detailed report about the transmission line at the site, including the height of the 11 KV wires.


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