At least 41 killed in northern India road accident

August 22nd, 2011 - 8:33 pm ICT by BNO News  

LUCKNOW, INDIA (BNO NEWS) — At least 41 people were killed on Monday when a tractor-trolley carrying dozens of pilgrims overturned and plunged into a pond in northern India, officials said.

The accident occurred in the Ballia District of northern India’s Uttar Pradesh on Monday evening when the vehicle, which was overcrowded, overturned and fell into a roadside ditch which was filled with water, according to District Magistrate Madhukar Dwivedi.

According to reports, around 60 pilgrims from the Usmanpur village in Ballia, located 300 kilometers (185 miles) southeast of Lucknow, the state capital, were traveling in the vehicle. They were on their way to a Hindu temple in neighboring Ghazipur.

Among the 41 people who were killed were 30 women, local authorities said, adding that another 20 people were injured as a result of the accident. Some of the victims were killed due to the injuries suffered from the impact while others drowned.

The exact causes of the accident are being investigated.

India is often the scene of deadly road accidents, many of which are attributed to reckless driving, aging vehicle and overloading. In new figures released last year, India overtook China to top the world in road fatalities.

According to India’s National Crime Records Bureau, there were 126,896 deaths in 2009. This amount represented a 7.3 percent increase in comparison with 2008. Road accidents caused 37.9 percent of the country’s deaths due to unnatural causes last year.

In early June, at least 38 people were killed when a train collided with a passenger bus in the Dariyawganj area of Uttar Pradesh. More than 30 others were injured in the accident.

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