In an unfortunate incident of road mishap at Asansol, four persons were killed on Tuesday. The incident sparked instant protest and road-block by local residents.
Two women and two children traveling in an auto rickshaw were killed when a truck collided with it while trying to negotiate a crater in Asansol Tuesday, prompting a four-hour roadblock by residents demanding immediate repair of the potholed stretch.
The incident took place at around 11 am. A truck, overloaded with paddy, hit the auto bearing a Jharkhand number after the lorry driver lost control when trying to negotiate a crater. The truck was not speeding. But the driver lost control trying to avoid a huge pothole and head the auto head-on, said a local resident.
The two women died on spot and the children who showed some movement while being taken to a hospital on Chittaranjan, were declared brought dead. The three of the deceased were identified as Lakshmi Devi, 27; her son Munna Mandal, and her mother Leela Devi, 50, all residents of Neamatpur. The fourth body which police said was of a 10 year old boy, is yet to be identified.
The driver of the auto has been admitted with injuries in head and limbs to the Asansol Sub-divisional Hospital. The protesters torched the truck. The driver and the cleaner escaped.
About 500 people gathered within minutes of the accident on the road connecting Neamatpur and Chittaranjan and alleged that they have been requesting the PWD to fill the craters on the 12 Km stretch for the past three years but to no avail.
The four hour road blockade left at least 70 vehicles stranded. Many cars took a detour through NH2 to reach Asansol. Neamatpur BDO, Prasanta Maity arrived at the accident spot around 3 pm along with PWD assistant engineer, Atanu Saha. Saha told them that repairs would begin soon after the rural polls. The blockade was lifted after that and the police lifted the bodies and the vehicles.
The PWD said repairs would begin soon after the rural polls, but Burdwan district magistrate O.S. Meena said he had urged the department to start work “as early as possible”. For this repair, 16 crore has already been sanctioned.