Three of the six residents of Saki Naka, who were killed in an accident on the Mumbai-Nashik highway on Saturday, could have been saved if they had received medical attention on time.
The group was returning from a pilgrimage to Shirdi, when the vehicle in which they were travelling crashed into a divider on the Khardi flyover at Shahapur taluka.
The victims had to be taken to the Thane Civil Hospital since there were no medical facilities available at Shahapur.
Sub-inspector B Chavan of Shahapur police station said, "The pilgrims were on Khardi flyover, coming via Ghoti road, when the driver lost control of the steering wheel around 3.30 pm. The jeep rammed into the divider, killing three of the 10 occupants on the spot."
Parvati Tiwari, 43, Sushila Shukla, 40, and Dinanath Tripathi, 48, died on the spot according to the police, while Rajmani Tiwari, 45, Shubham Tiwari, 14, and the driver, Shyamsundar Shukla, 26, succumbed when they were being rushed to the Thane Civil Hospital.
"The accident occurred at 3.30 pm. But the victims reached Thane Civil Hospital only at 6 pm. For an hour, the villagers who had gathered around the accident spot tried to seek help from passing vehicles, but to no avail. A passing ambulance declined help saying that the vehicle was reserved only for politicians and not meant to help civilians," said Amit Shukla, 24, who lost his mother Sushila.
"There are no facilities in Shahapur. So the police had to drive for over an hour to reach the hospital in Thane. Three more of our people died in this time. Had there been proper facilities in the village, those three would have definitely survived," said Hemant Upadhyay, brother of one of the survivors.
The four survivors are Vanita Upadhyay, 19, Chhaya Tiwari, 18, Nirja Tiwari, 15, and Priya Tiwari, 10. Shubham and his parents died in the accident, his three sisters survived.