Five persons, including four women, were killed when the escort vehicle in Minister of State for Defence M.M. Pallam Raju’s three-car convoy hit an autorickshaw near the port city of Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh on Thursday.
The autorickshaw, which was in front of the convoy, veered sharply to the right in a bid to overtake two others while securitymen in the pilot vehicle were trying to clear the road, East Godavari district Superinten-dent of Police Nagi Reddy said.
“Prima facie, it is the auto driver’s fault. But we will also examine if the pilot vehicle driver was at fault,” Reddy said.
The autorickshaw driver has been booked for causing death by negligence and endangering the lives of others.
Eyewitnesses said Raju got out of his car immediately and supervised relief measures and met the locals for nearly three hours. “I offer my condolences to the families of the deceased,” the minister said.
Raju, who represents the Kaki-nada constituency in Lok Sabha was on his way Kakinada, 525 km from Hyderabad.
The convoy, followed by five private cars, was travelling at 50-60 km per hour, police said. Eyewitness K. Satyanarayana, however, told local TV news channels, “The minister’s convoy was travelling fast.”