The bus that plunged into a canal taken out during a rescue operation, in Sidhi district on Tuesday. (ANI Photo)
The bus that plunged into a canal taken out during a rescue operation, in Sidhi district on Tuesday. (ANI Photo)

Sidhi bus accident: 17-year-old schoolgirl jumped into canal and saved 7 people

Passengers unsuccessfully tried to break the windows of the ill-fated bus, which had more than 50 people, when it rolled down into the canal, a survivor said.
By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Amit Chaturvedi
UPDATED ON FEB 17, 2021 12:00 PM IST

The tragic incident in Madhya Pradesh's Sidhi, where a bus plunged into a canal leading to death of 50 people on Tuesday, has shocked the entire country. The bus was on its way to Satna from Sidhi.

But the bravery of a schoolgirl is winning hearts. Shivrani Lonia and her brother - all aged between 16 and 22 years - saved seven passengers from the ill-fated bus.

“A 17-year-old girl Shivrani Lonia and her brother Ramprasad, who live near the canal with her family, helped at least seven people in coming out of water. Lonia informed the others that a bus has fell into the canal,” said Pankaj Kumawat, superintendent of police, Sidhi.

Lonia saw the bus coming in at high speed, skidding off the road and rolling down into the water-filled canal. But without fearing for her life, she and her brother jumped into the canal to save the passengers.

“The bus was at a very high speed when the driver lost the control. After the bus plunged into the canal, we jumped into the canal to save the passengers, but we could save only seven people, who came out of the bus after the accident,” Lonia told reporters on Tuesday.

However, one of the seven saved by Lonia died during treatment.

District collector Ravindra Kumar Choudhary said at the time of the accident, the water level in the canal was about 25 feet.

"I salute the courage shown by daughter Shivrani. Not caring for her life, this daughter saved the lives of two passengers by jumping into the canal in Sidhi. I thank the daughter. The entire state is proud of you," chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said in Bhopal.

The accident took place near Patna village, around 80 km from the Sidhi district headquarters.

“In the preliminary investigation, it was found that the driver took a short route as there was a traffic jam on the regular road near a Chhuiha Valley and the job aspirants, who were in the bus, were requesting the driver to increase the speed as they were getting late for the exam. The driver lost the control of the bus and it plunged into a canal,” said Kumawat.

Passengers unsuccessfully tried to break the windows of the ill-fated bus, which had more than 50 people, when it rolled down into the canal, news agency PTI quoted a survivor as saying. The driver of the bus Balendyu Vishwakarma is missing after the incident.

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