12 killed as van hits truck in Uttar Pradesh

LAKHIMPUR KHERI (UP), Apr 28: A speeding van carrying 18 passengers rammed into a stationary truck on the National Highway 24 here early this morning, killing 12 people and injuring six others, the police said.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath expressed grief over the deaths in the accident and directed the officials concerned to initiate steps for ensuring all possible help and proper treatment to the injured.

The incident took place in Uchauliya when the overloaded Tata Magic van, on its way to Sitapur from Shahjahanpur, hit the truck from the rear side near a roadside eatery, Superintendent of Police S Channappa said.

Nine people, including the van’s driver Anup Awasthi (25) and helper Kishan (23), died on the spot, he said.

Three of the seven injured who were rushed to a hospital in Shahjahanpur succumbed to their injuries later, the police said.

Deputy SP Vijay Anand said two children, aged three months and two, had a miraculous escape.

The driver lost control of the speeding van leading to the accident, Anand said, adding that efforts were on to identify the other deceased.

Meanwhile, Inspector General (IG) Lucknow Range Sujit Pandey has assured stringent action against those who run taxis beyond their capacity.

Pandey was here to console the aggrieved families who lost their members in the tragic accident.

He told reporters: “The scenario would change in the coming days, and no overloading in taxis would be allowed. DM, SP and road transport authorities have been asked to chalk out a joint strategy to stop the malpractice.”

According to a statement issued by the Lakhimpur Police, the identity of 11 of the 12 people has been established. They are Anoop Kumar (25), Saroj Rajput (24), Wasim (28), Chandan (25), Lallu (55), Rukhsar (28), Rakesh (20), Roshani (35) and an unidentified person who died on the spot.

Three others — Poonam (30), Vedpal (30) and Satish (32) — succumbed to their injuries at Shahjahanpur hospital.

Police added that six persons — Sabirunnishan (50), Fahim (12), Sajia (2), Preeti (3), Rajesh (35) and Najim (35) — were injured and sent to Shahjahanpur. Among these, Sajia is safe, while Priti, Rajesh and Najim were referred to Lucknow. Sabirunnishan and Fahim are undergoing treatment at the Shahjahanpur district hospital.

On Thursday, 13 children on their way to school were killed when a train rammed into their van at an unmanned railway crossing in Kushinagar. (PTI)