At least nine persons were killed and 11 others were injured in an accident involving a government bus near Rajakulam, about 15 km from Kancheepuram, on Thursday afternoon.
Police said the bus, which had 51 passengers on board, was bound to Chennai from Hosur on National Highway 45, when driver Chitti Babu (52) of Vellore apparently lost control and rammed the vehicle into a stationary lorry. The impact crushed a portion of the bus. Chitti Babu has been picked up by police.
The bodies of the deceased and the injured persons were initially taken to the Kancheepuram Government General Hospital.
The victims include Saritha (3), who was travelling with her mother to Chennai, and Vijaybabu (30), a newly married man from Velachery, who was returning after visiting his wife. Mohan (50) and Subashini (45), a couple from Thiruvotriyur, Jyothi (45), a resident of Avadi, Rajesh (28), a resident of Taramani, and Udayasooriyan (56), were the other victims identified so far. Two more bodies were yet to be identified.
Seven grievously injured persons have been shifted to the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital here for further treatment.
Meanwhile, CM J Jayalalithaa condoled those who died in the accident and announced a solatium of `1 lakh for the kin of those who died in the accident, `25,000 per person for the grievously injured and `10,000 per person for those who sustained minor injuries from the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund.
Jayalalithaa has also asked Transport Minister Senthil Balaji and Animal Husbandry Minister TKM Chinnaiyya to rush to the spot and help those affected in the accident.