Three more bodies were recovered on Wednesday evening, taking the toll to five, in the accident where a tempo van carrying 17 persons, including the driver, fell into a canal in Sojitra area in Anand district on Tuesday night.
According to police, the accident occurred around 6 pm Tuesday when the vehicle driver was trying to avoid a motorcycle coming from the opposite side on a narrow road adjacent to the canal. The victims were all daily wage workers from Petlad town of Anand who had gone to Sojitra to for paddy pruning work. Around 5.30 pm, they started their journey towards Petlad.
“Teams of police and fire brigade reached the canal spot immediately and 12 persons were rescued. Two bodies were recovered Tuesday night while three persons swept away in the canal and their bodies were recovered Wednesday and the search operation ended,” said MV Chavda, police inspector and in-charge Officer, Sojitra police station.
The bodies of Madhu Talpada (25) and Savita Talpada (40) were found on Tuesday night, while those of Arjun Talpada (26), Bharti Talpada (17) and Parul Talpada (15) were recovered from the canal in Tarapur and Ronaj villages of Anand on Wednesday evening.
Tempo driver Lalit Talpada has been arrested for “overloading the vehicle and driving in a rash manner”. As per the FIR, he has been booked under Indian Penal Code sections 304A for causing death by negligence, 279 for rash driving and 337 for causing grievous hurt by acting in a rash manner.
“The driver allowed 16 passengers in a vehicle that had the capacity of seven persons. People were sitting on the driver’s seat as well and he lost control trying to manage the tempo when a bike was coming from the opposite side. He was arrested on Tuesday night and presented before the magistrate on Wednesday. He received bail then,” said Chavda.
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