Dailekh survivors recount mishap

KOHALPUR: Rohinilal Choudhari of Malakheti, Kailali, has been lying on the bed of Kohalpur Teaching Hospital. Seriously injured in the bus accident in Dailekh today, it was a double whammy for him.

He was going home as his mother had passed away. “If possible please take me to my home immediately; I want to see my mother for the last time,” he sobbed. “I have been grieved more by my mother’s death than my own injuries.” His family is waiting for him for the last rites of his mother.

He has suffered serious injuries in his head and back.

Serving as a soldier in Nepali Army, Choudhari was deputed in Siddha Box Battalion,

Kalikot. He was preparing to go to Jumla as the battalion

in which he was working was transferred there. Upon receiving the message of his mother’s death, he got on to the bus at 6 am to reach Surkhet form Kalikot. “I was sitting on a seat beside the driver with my eyes shut,” he recalled. “The bus had already skidded off the road when I opened my eyes. I used all my effort to stick to the seat but luckily I was hurled out of the bus.”

He fell on a rock and he could not get up immediately. The bus plunged into Karnali River in front of his eyes. Before he lost his consciousness, he heard many people shouting for help.

Binaya Bam, who was heading to Surkhet, was also seriously injured in the accident. Recalling the mishap, he said, “I saw many passengers being hurled out of the windows as the bus was hurtling down. I survived as I was also hurled out of the bus. Those who were trapped in the bus drowned.”

Madhav Prasad Upadhyaya, a journalist based in Kalikot, survived by swimming out. Upadhyaya said, “When the bus plunged into the river,

I suddenly thought of coming out of the window and

swam to safety with much difficulty. Those trapped in

the bus could not be rescued and were left to die.”

Bus driver Nawaraj Banjara was also seriously injured in the accident. He suffered injuries on his face and head. Undergoing treatment in the Kohalpur Hospital, Banjara said, “The accident took place as the steering rod of the bus broke. The bus went out of control and fell off the road.”

Ten seriously injured persons were brought to Kohalpur Hospital by Nepali Army. According to the hospital, condition of some of the injured is critical.