36 Nepali pilgrims killed in bus accident

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Kathmandu/Dehra Dun, Aug 1 (UNI) At least 36 Nepali pilgrims, returning from Badrinath temple, were killed and seven injured when the bus they were travelling in, fell in Alaknanda river in Uttarakhand near Birihi, 10 km from Chamoli district last night, local media said here today.

Thirty four pilgrims died on the spot and two people were killed while undergoing treatment at Gopeshwor Hospital, Kantipur quoted District Administrator D S Garbiyal.

Till this morning, 21 bodies have been recovered while the rest of the bodies have drowned in the river, Mr Garbiyal said.

The bus belonging to Araniko Yatayat skidded off some 100 feet after it collided with a rock, into river.

Indian army and policemen have been deployed at the accident area for help.

About seven people were taken to Gopeshwor hospital after the accident, which took place at around 1645 hrs yesterday.

Among them, two died while undergoing treatment. The injured, Ganga Karki and Sabitri Subedi of Panauti and Kalika Karki, a resident of Kathmandu have been referred to Srinagar Medical College in Haridwar, Mr Garbial informed.

The bus assistant Rajesh Pudasaini and a minor, Puspa Raj Neupane are undergoing treatment at Gopeshwor hospital.

The Nepal government has sent a team of four members, led by Kanchanpur Police Superintendent Sher Bahadur Chanda from Mahendranagar, to the accident area for inspection.

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