At least 18 killed in road accident in W. India

13:49, June 09, 2011      

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At least 18 pilgrims sleeping near the roadside were killed and 10 others seriously injured after they were run over by a speeding truck near the western Indian city of Ahmedabad early Thursday, according to local media reports.

The mishap took place on a highway when a group of people were sleeping near a road side "dhaba" or small restaurant at a crossroad.

The pilgrims were going to attend a fair in a village of Dholka, about 20 km from Ahmedabad, the state capital of Gujarat.

According to the police, the truck lost control and ran over them. Sixteen persons, including nine women, were killed on the spot while two others died in hospital.

The injured were admitted to various hospitals in Dholka town and Ahmedabad, police said.

The tragedy took place two days after 23 people were burnt to death when a bus they were traveling with caught fire Tuesday night in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

Road accident rate in India is among the highest in the world, with at least 100,000 killed on the road each year, according to official estimates.

Source: Xinhua
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