Oil tanker knocks three to death

Birgunj, October 7 :

Irate locals disrupted traffic on the Bypass Road and the Gandak section of the Tribhuvan Highway for four hours today after three people were killed and one injured when an Indian oil tanker hit them at the Laxmanawa Chowk of Birgunj last night.

Two persons were killed on the spot and one died undergoing treatment. The tanker was bound for Raxaul.

Enraged Laxmanawa residents halted traffic on the highway demanding compensation for the victims’ families. They also burnt tyres on the road. Traffic resumed at around 10 am after superintendent of police Surendra Phuyal assured locals that appropriate compensation to the victims’ families would be sought from the tanker owner within a week and that the injured would be sent to Kathmandu for treatment. A large number of buses bound for different destinations were stuck at the bus park due to the disruption in traffic.

The Parsa district police office said that Naga Mahato, 50, of Laxmanawa, Birgunj-18 and another unidentified person were killed on the spot while Naga’s wife, Janaki Devi, died while undergoing treatment at the Narayani sub-regional hospital this morning. Sona Lal Shah, who was injured in the incident, is undergoing treatment.

According to eyewitnesses, the mishap occurred because the tanker was speeding. The driver tried to negotiate a bend near the statue of late King Birendra at the chowk and the tanker dashed into an island near the road after ramming four persons.

The tanker driver fled with his vehicle. Police later seized the tanker from a nearby customs office after locals informed the police. Both the tanker driver and helper are absconding.

Traffic police inspector Gyanendra Pakhrin said the Bypass Road is prone to accidents due to its narrowness and an island.