Eight killed, 12 injured after van carrying devotees hits stationary truck in Odisha's Keonjhar

Police sources said a family from Podamari village of Digapahandi area in ​​Ganjam district were on their way to Ghatagaon to offer puja at Maa Tarini temple. They hired a van to visit the temple. 
The mangled remains of the van the devotees were travelling in.
The mangled remains of the van the devotees were travelling in.

KEOJHAR: A pilgrimage to Ma Tarini temple turned tragic for a family when eight members died and 12 others were injured after a van they were travelling in dashed a stationary truck from behind in Odisha’s Keonjhar district on Friday.

Police sources said a family from Podamari village of Digapahandi area in ​​Ganjam district were on their way to Ghatagaon to offer puja at Maa Tarini temple. They hired a van to visit the temple. 

"Altogether 20 persons were travelling in a Tata Winger, which hit a stationary truck. The impact of the collision was so intense that the bodies were scattered on the highway. Further investigation is on," the sources said.  The exact cause of the accident is yet to be ascertained.

Seven persons died on the spot while one succumbed to injuries in hospital. Seriously injured passengers were rushed to the district headquarters hospital of Keonjhar.

The deceased are Mita Pradhan, her son Akash and daughter-in-law Ili Pradhan, Bayaghana Gouda, Babula Gouda, Padmini Gouda, Madan Gouda and Rudra Gouda. Three of them are relatives of former Rajya Sabha member Renubala Pradhan.

Keonjhar SP Nitin Kushalkar rushed to the spot and monitored the rescue operation. The bodies have been sent for post-mortem.

After the accident, the vehicular movement on the NH was disrupted for a few hours.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik expressed deep grief over the tragic accident and announced exgratia of Rs 3 lakh each for the kin of the deceased. 

He has also directed to provide free treatment to the injured persons and wished them a speedy recovery.

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