BY SAKSHI CHAND
Agra: July 8: “We were all in deep sleep when the bus toppled twice before falling in the nallah (drain). Screams were heard for about a minute after which there was silence. Some passengers climbed on top of bodies to make their way out of the bus,” said Rishi Yadav, a survivor of the bus accident on the Expressway in which 30 people were reported killed on Monday morning.
Yadav, a resident of Barabanki, is currently undergoing treatment at Agra’s Sri Krishna Hospital.
The double-decker bus with 53 passengers on board was on its way to Delhi from Lucknow when it hit a divider and fell into the 40-feet-deep gap between two flyovers on the Yamuna Expressway near milestone 161 (Jharna nallah) under Etmadpur police jurisdiction of Agra district at around 4.15 a.m
Agra District Magistrate Ravi Kumar said: “The bus was speeding and the driver may have dozed off.”
Police said there were no skid marks on the road. Some of the survivors too said the bus was being driven at a speed of about 100 kmph. The impact of the accident was such that one of its tyres burst after which the bus fell into the drain.
Police reports said that 20 passengers had been rescued and efforts were on to rescue the rest. Of the 30 dead, 19 have been identified. The injured have been admitted in various hospitals. Two of the injured are in coma and are yet to be identified.
“We are trying to identify all the victims. We will share, once we have all the details,” said Bablu Kumar, SSP, Agra.
Ariba Khan’s family lost its lone earner. “She used to work in Navi Mumbai and was always fond of giving surprises. She had come home on June 10 after her father had a heart attack. Her siblings are younger than her,” said her mother crying outside the mortuary.
The scene outside the mortuary was heart-wrenching — weeping relatives and family members showing pictures and trying to locate their loved ones. Police officials running around with pictures of unidentified deceased on their mobile phones to ascertain if their relatives had come.
Avinash Awasthi hailed from Lucknow and worked as a clerk in Greater Noida. “He had come to Lucknow on July 4 for his house warming ceremony and was on his way back to join his office from Monday. He is survived by his parents and a brother,” said his relative.(IANS)