At least 11 labourers were killed and 15 others injured when a mini truck overturned and fell into a 10-feet-deep culvert near a village in the district early on Thursday, a police official said.
The accident took place at around 1 am near Jamunia village when the labourers were travelling in the truck of the forest department to Chargavan for plucking tendu leaves, Jabalpur’s deputy superintendent of police (DSP) Manjeet Chawla said.
The truck driver lost control of the vehicle while approaching the culvert.
The victims were contractual labourers and had come from Maharashtra’s Gondia district, he said. Nearly 35 people were travelling in the truck when it met with the accident.
While 10 of the victims died on the spot, one succumbed later on the way to hospital, the DSP said.
The deceased were identified as - Budhram Rawat (45), Chunni Lal (35), Gajesh (33), Pradeep (18), Ramnath (33), Tularam (30), Sumeshwar (32), Lachhu Choudhry (30), Chagan Kamde (43), Shankar Marskole (40) and Santu (50), the police official said.
The injured persons were admitted in the Jabalpur Medical College for treatment.
Jabalpur collector Mahesh Chandra Choudhry said Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has announced an ex-gratia of Rs one lakh to the kin of each of the deceased.
The chief minister has also announced a help of Rs 50,000 for the seriously injured persons, Rs 25,000 to those who sustained ‘simple’ injuries and are admitted in hospital, and Rs 15,000 each to those who suffered minor injuries in the mishap, according to the collector.
Police have registered a case and arrested the truck driver, identified as one Prahlad.
A forest guard, Bhupendra Singh, who was also sitting in the vehicle, escaped from the site after the mishap, the police official added.