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At least 17 dead as truck with 70 persons overturn in Meghalaya

Seventeen people were killed and over 50 injured when a truck carrying churchgoers overturned in the West Khasi Hills district of Meghalaya on Sunday morning.

The accident occurred around 8.30am at Nongspung village, 11 km from the district headquarters of Nogstoin on the road to Shillong. “Preliminary investigations show that the accident took place due to rash driving. The truck was carrying nearly 70 people from three nearby villages, all of whom were heading to church,” said West Khasi Hills superintendent of police Sylvester Nongtnger.

“Twelve people died on the spot and five succumbed to their injuries in hospital,” Sylvester Nongtnger, the police chief of West Khasi Hills said. The dead included nine women and a 13-year-old girl.

The injured, including the driver and helper of the truck, have been rushed to nearby hospitals and to the Shillong Civil Hospital. Witnesses said that accident was caused by overspeeding but the police are carrying on further investigation.

The accident occurred at around 8:30 AM on Sunday, with SP Nongtnger saying that a case of rash driving has been registered. “The driver, who sustained minor injury has been arrested under Section 304(A),” he said.

Bodies of 12 victims have been handed over to their respective relatives after conducting post-mortem examination, the SP said.

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