Auraiya, May 17 (PTI) Two of the 36 migrant workers, injured in a road accident on early Saturday morning at Auraiya in Uttar Pradesh, died, raising the death toll in the mishap to 26, said local police..
A total of 24 migrant workers had died and 36 injured at 3.05 am on Saturday when a trailer truck carrying sacks of lime and 43 people rammed into the back of a stationary truck with many other migrant workers sitting in it near a roadside eatery on National Highway in Auraiya.
In a statement issued here, the Auraiya Police said the accident took place near Shivji Dhaba in Tikauli village involving a trailer truck and a mini-truck with both the vehicles falling into a ditch by the roadside.
“In the accident, 26 migrant labourers died, while 34 others sustained injuries,” the statement said, updating the casualty figures.
A case has been registered against the drivers, owners and transporters of both the vehicles under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, the Epidemic Act and the Motor Vehicles Act at Kotwali police station in Auraiya.
Investigations are going on in this regard, police said, adding efforts are being made to arrest the drivers, owners and transporters of both the vehicles.
The accident in Auraiya is the latest one in a string of mishaps involving migrant workers returning to their native states amid the coronavirus lockdown.
Most of the victims were sitting on sacks of lime powder loaded on the trailer, and were crushed when the vehicles overturned and fell into a ditch following the crash near an eatery between 3 AM and 3.30 AM on the Auraiya-Kanpur Dehat stretch of National Highway 19, police said.
While many of the workers were from Jharkhand and West Bengal, some were from Kushinagar in eastern Uttar Pradesh, they said.
'In the accident, most of the labourers were crushed under these bags, which were on the trailer truck, and died. Some of them succumbed to injuries on the way to hospital,' District Magistrate Abhishek Singh said, adding all the deceased were men.
The mini-truck, which was going from Delhi to Madhya Pradesh, had stopped at the eatery as some workers wanted to have tea. It was carrying around 22 people, including five women and seven children, officials said.
The trailer truck with 43 migrants was coming from Rajasthan, they said.
Both the vehicles were ferrying people who found themselves without jobs, money or food during the lockdown and were desperate to get back home.
Local villagers assisted the police and the administration in the rescue operation as JCB machines were used to pull out the people from under the lime sacks.
The badly mangled vehicles showed the intensity of the crash. PTI CORR NAV RAX RAX