Unforgettable drive in Sabarimala on Makara Jyothi

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Sabarimala Pilgrims
Vandiperiyar, Jan 16: The truck driver Aneesh would never forget the drive in his life as he transported dead pilgrims and those barely alive in his truck from Pullmedu to a hospital on ''Makara Jyothi'' when 102 pilgrims were killed in the Sabarimala stampede.

“But the 30-km journey from Pullmedu to Vandiperiyar hospital took six and half hours through the narrow road and most of those injured died by the time he arrived at the hospital," Aneesh said.

"Some cried for a few drops of water... They fell silent after a while during the bumpy ride. The road was narrow and there were lots of vehicles," he said.

Aneesh said that he rushed to the mishap spot on hearing a loud sound and saw the stampede. He along with two other lorry drivers put the dead and injured onto lorries for transporting them to the hospital.

"They were mostly dead pilgrims. A few were alive," he added.

“Many were barely breathing. By the time the lorries reached the hospital, there were hardly a few survivors," Aneesh said.

Aneesh said that all their efforts to save lives would have borne fruit, if there been more police, more lights along the narrow road.

PTI

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