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Delhi-bound bus topples, catches fire in Bihar’s Motihari

The bus, which was travelling to Delhi from Muzaffarpur, caught fire after it veered off the road and overturned.

india Updated: May 03, 2018 23:21 IST
Sagar Suraj
Sagar Suraj
Hindustan Times, Motihari
Bihar,Bus accident,Passengers burned alive
The bus caught fire after it overturned on the NH28 near Chetwa village in Motihari district, Bihar on Thursday. (PTI )

Five people were feared killed in Bihar’s Motihari district on Thursday as a Delhi-bound bus they were travelling in caught fire after it fell into a ditch along a highway, officials said.

Of the 13 people on the bus, eight were rescued. “Mangled remains of the Muzaffarpur-Delhi bus that fell off the NH 28 into a deep roadside ditch have been pulled,” East Champaran (Motihari) district magistrate Raman Kumar said.

He said the 13 people had boarded the bus from Muzaffarpur and another 27 were scheduled to travel from Gopalganj. The accident took place before the bus could reached Gopalganj.

The DM said the vehicle toppled over when the driver applied brakes to save a motorcyclist, and it caught fire.

Pratay Amrit, a disaster management official, told The Associated Press a team of forensic experts was examining the wreckage of the bus as five people on board were believed to have lost their lives.

Several reports earlier said more than 20 people were feared killed in the accident.

Locals gather around the bus after a fire broke out following an accident on NH 28, Bihar. ( ANI/Twitter )

The police are investigating the cause of the accident and have arrested the bus agent, Saroj Singh, from Muzaffarpur for operating without proper permits.

“The bus had left Muzaffarpur bus stand around 2.45pm. Around 4.14 pm, it slid off the road and fell into the roadside ditch. We all were trapped upside down. All of us were screaming for help. Soon, we saw smoke emanating from the engine side. We somehow broke the window panes and came out,” said Sanjeev Kumar, one of the survivors undergoing treatment said.

Separate teams of National Disaster Response Force and the State Disaster Response Force were rushed to the spot with gas-cutters after the accident for rescue efforts.

Chief minister Nitish Kumar offered his condolences, adding that the state would extend all possible help to the families of the victims.

First Published: May 03, 2018 17:55 IST