10 boys on pilgrimage electrocuted: 14 suffer injuries; short-circuit from generator on moving van suspected

The pick-up van, on which the electrocution occurred, at Mekhliganj police station on Monday: Main Uddin Chisti

TT Correspondent   |   Cooch Behar   |   02.08.22  : Ten boys travelling on a cramped pick-up van to a Shiva temple in Jalpaiguri district were electrocuted and 14 others on the vehicle suffered injuries at Mekhliganj in neighbouring Jalpaiguri district on early Monday morning.

The deceased and the injured were part of a 35-member group of pilgrims who had hired the van, sound boxes and a generator set. Police said preliminary investigation suggested that a short-circuit in the wiring of the generator set had triggered the electrocution.

All the pilgrims were from different villages under the jurisdiction of Sitalkuchi police station in Cooch Behar district. During the monsoon, thousands of devotees throng the Shiva temple at Jalpesh in Maynaguri block.

“The pilgrims had hired sound boxes and loaded a generator set in the rear of the pick-up van. The electrocution happened when the vehicle reached the Dharala river bridge under the jurisdiction of Mekhliganj police station. Preliminary investigations have revealed that there was a circuit in the wiring of the generator which led to the incident,” said Amit Verma, the additional superintendent of police of Mathabhanga.

All the 35 youths were rushed to the block primary health centre in the nearby Changrabandha.

“A medical officer declared 10 of them dead. Fourteen injured persons were referred to the super-specialty hospital in Jalpaiguri. The vehicle has been seized but the driver escaped. We are in search of him,” said Verma.

Later on Monday, nine were discharged from the Jalpaiguri hospital.

Pilgrims on a pick-up van with sound boxes at Jalpaiguri on Monday.
Pilgrims on a pick-up van with sound boxes at Jalpaiguri on Monday.
Biplab Basak
Soon after the tragedy, seven pilgrims who didn’t suffer any injury de-boarded the van and were found waiting for vehicles to return home. But the police took them also to the hospital for a check-up.

“Senior officers have visited the spot. Our men are coordinating relief operations,” Verma said.

The boys, sources said, hailed from areas like Golenahati and Thakurpara near Sitalkuchi. The pilgrims mostly belonged to day-wage earners’ families.

The deceased were Subhankar Barman, 16, Swapan Barman, 17, Badal Barman, 17, Bishal Tirki, 17, Bibhash Barman, 18, Bikram Baishya, 18,  Bapi Barman alias Bappa, 17, Laxman Barman, 17, Manab Barman, 16 and Sushanta Barman, 16.

Family members and relatives of the deceased and the injured rushed to Changrabandha and Jalpaiguri. A number of political leaders and police officers visited the villages and met the bereaved families.

In the afternoon, state minister Aroop Biswas took a flight from Calcutta and reached Bagdogra.

“I will visit the hospital in Jalpaiguri to check out the condition of those who are under treatment. Tomorrow, I will meet the affected families and hand over compensation to them. Mamata Banerjee and her government have always stood by people affected by tragedies,” Biswas said before heading for Jalpaiguri.

The incident has triggered questions whether use of sound boxes, along with mixer, and generators can be allowed to be carried on vehicles, especially during the monsoon.

“It is definitely risky to run a generator set on a running vehicle. There is always a chance of electrocution. These days, many youths are found carrying sound boxes and generators on vehicles and playing loud music as they set out for pilgrimage. This practice should be discouraged,” said Rakesh Dutta, a schoolteacher.

No comments

Thank you for reaching out to us. We are happy to receive your opinion and request. If you need advert or sponsored post, We’re excited you’re considering advertising or sponsoring a post on our blog. Your support is what keeps us going. With the current trend, it’s very obvious content marketing is the way to go. Banner advertising and trying to get customers through Google Adwords may get you customers but it has been proven beyond doubt that Content Marketing has more lasting benefits.
We offer majorly two types of advertising:
1. Sponsored Posts: If you are really interested in publishing a sponsored post or a press release, video content, advertorial or any other kind of sponsored post, then you are at the right place.
Generally, a sponsored post can be any of the following:
Press release
Video content
This kind of post is usually written to promote you or your business. However, we do prefer posts that naturally flow with the site’s general content. This means we can also promote artists, songs, cosmetic products and things that you love of all products or services.
Every sponsored article will remain live on the site as long as this website exists. The duration is indefinite! Again, we will share your post on our social media channels and our email subscribers too will get to read your article. You’re exposing your article to our: Twitter followers, Facebook fans and other social networks.

We will also try as much as possible to optimize your post for search engines as well.

Submission of Materials : Sponsored post should be well written in English language and all materials must be delivered via electronic medium. All sponsored posts must be delivered via electronic version, either on disk or e-mail on Microsoft Word unless otherwise noted.
The price largely depends on if you’re writing the content or we’re to do that. But if your are writing the content, it is $60 per article.

2. Banner Advertising: We also offer banner advertising in various sizes and of course, our prices are flexible. you may choose to for the weekly rate or simply buy your desired number of impressions.

Technical Details And Pricing
Banner Size 300 X 250 pixels : Appears on the home page and below all pages on the site.
Banner Size 728 X 90 pixels: Appears on the top right Corner of the homepage and all pages on the site.
Large rectangle Banner Size (336x280) : Appears on the home page and below all pages on the site.
Small square (200x200) : Appears on the right side of the home page and all pages on the site.
Half page (300x600) : Appears on the right side of the home page and all pages on the site.
Portrait (300x1050) : Appears on the right side of the home page and all pages on the site.
Billboard (970x250) : Appears on the home page.

Submission of Materials : Banner ads can be in jpeg, jpg and gif format. All materials must be deliverd via electronic medium. All ads must be delivered via electronic version, either on disk or e-mail in the ordered pixel dimensions unless otherwise noted.
For advertising offers, send an email with your name,company, website, country and advert or sponsored post you want to appear on our website to omodjk(at)gmail(dot)com

Normally, we should respond within 48 hours.