Tourists killed as bus falls from hill

Bhubaneswar: At least four tourists, including two women, were killed and 30 others injured when a bus carrying them fell from tourist spot Dhauli Hills at the outskirt of the state capital here on Tuesday.

The incident took place on Tuesday afternoon when a private bus carrying about 40 tourists from Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal was descending from the Dhauli Hills, the police said. The driver apparently lost control and the bus fell about 30 feet down.

Two deceased women were identified as Laxmipriya Mandol (26) and Taruni Devi (55) of Sareikela in Jharkhand. The two women and a man were declared brought dead at the hospital where another person succumbed to his injuries.

The identity of the two men (aged about 50 and 80 years) were yet to be ascertained, hospital sources said. Six of the injured persons had so far been shifted to SCB Medical College Hospital in Cuttack as their condition deteriorated, the sources said.

A 15-member team of doctors was attending to the injured persons here, said Sudarshan Das, chief medical officer of the Capital Hospital here. "The bus fell down at a turn…. We were rescued by local people after the bus stopped rolling," said Monika Mahato of Jamshedpur, whose little son had sustained head injury.

The tourists from different states boarded the bus on Tuesday morning after visiting the Lord Jagannath in Puri. They visited Konark temple before reaching at Dhauli, police said. Dhauli has major edicts of the Mauryan emperor Ashoka engraved on a mass of rock. It is presumed to be the area of the bloody battle of Kalinga in 265 BC.