Chittoor: Around 14 people have been killed and many injured after a lorry rammed into a crowd of protesters at Nayudupeta state highway in Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh.
A group of about 50 people had come to the police station to submit a petition against the illegal sand mining in the Swarnamukhi river and the police officers were talking to them when the driver of a truck passing by the police station apparently lost control over the vehicle, which hit an electrical pole on the Putalapattu-Nayudupeta state road.
The driver of the lorry lost control and rammed his vehicle into an electric pole, which then fell onto the crowd. The truck then ran into shops on the roadside, trampling at least six persons to death.
As the electrical wires got snapped, some people in the vicinity got electrocuted. It also caused a minor fire which was doused immediately. The truck driver and his assistant, who were suspected to be drunk, fled from the spot, the police said.
Those injured have been rushed to Ruia hospital in Tirupathi.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today expressed pain over the loss of lives in a road mishap in Andhra Pradesh.
“Pained by the loss of lives due to an accident in AP’s Chittoor dist. Condolences to families of the deceased & prayers with the injured,” he tweeted.
Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu expressed grief over the incident. The state cabinet has announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh each for the kin of the deceased.
Deputy Chief Minister N China Rajappa has expressed shock over the incident and has directed the Tirupati Superintendent of Police to make sure that the injured be extended necessary medical treatment.
Union I&B Minister M Venkaiah Naidu took to Twitter to express his condolences.
“Saddened to hear about the accident in Chittoor. My condolences to the bereaved families and my prayers with the injured,” the Minister tweeted.