New Delhi: At least 24 migrant labourers were killed and 36 others injured when a speeding mini-truck climbed over a stationary truck trolley in Uttar Pradesh’s Auraiya district early on Saturday, police officials said, in the latest accident involving stranded workers.
The mini-truck was carrying 18 migrants and the truck trolley had around 42 others when the accident happened.
Police officials said 20 of the injured migrant workers have been rushed to PGI Saifai in critical condition while 16 others are undergoing treatment at the district hospital in Auraiya.
As chief minister Yogi Adityanath condoled the deaths of the migrant workers, he directed officials to provide the best possible medical facility to the injured and ordered a detailed enquiry into the accident.
“The death of migrant workers/workers in a road accident in Auraiya district is unfortunate and sad. My condolences to the bereaved families of the dead,” Adityanath tweeted.
“Instructions have also been given to provide all possible relief to the victims, to provide proper treatment to the injured and to promptly investigate the accident,” he added.
Jai Narain Singh, additional director general (ADG) of police (Kanpur Zone), confirmed that the accident took place when the truck trolley stopped at a roadside eatery around 3.15am.
Singh said the truck trolley was carrying migrant labourers from Jaipur and Bharatpur districts of Rajasthan and most of them from UP’s Kushinagar, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal.
The senior police official said the mini-truck was ferrying the labourers from Delhi and was heading towards Sagar in Madhya Pradesh while crossing over borders through Auraiya district. He said the mini truck’s driver apparently fell asleep and failed to spot the truck trolley.
“The truck collided with the trolley from behind and climbed over it as the speed was high. All the 42 labourers sitting on the trolley were injured and 24 of them died before reaching the hospital,” Singh said while speaking over the phone.
He said he along with other officials have reached Auraiya and arranging all possible relief for the injured people.
Bodies of the labourers have been sent for post-mortem examination and efforts are on to contact their family members.
Tens of thousands of people have been walking home from big cities after being laid off because of the lockdown to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) since late March.
Millions of workers were left without work across cities and towns in India when the lockdown was announced on March 24, resulting in the first wave of workers going back to their villages.
Every phase of the extension has seen a new wave—the lockdown was extended twice, from April 14 to May 3 and then May 3 to May 17.