18 die as under-construction Varanasi flyover collapses

TIL Desk/National/Varanasi/ A portion of a flyover being built by a state-run corporation collapsed on a busy road in Varanasi on Tuesday, killing at least 18 people as it crushed a mini bus, cars and two-wheelers.

Officials feared that the toll may rise. Hours later, people were still believed buried under the rubble of the flyover with several cranes being deployed to lift the concrete girder that crashed around 4 pm on the road that leads to the Varanasi-Allahabad highway.

The district administration said nine people were injured, but unofficial reports put the number at about 20. A mini bus and four cars came under the slab, officials said. Eight to 10 two-wheelers were also trapped, Director General of Police O P Singh told.

Local residents said cyclists and pedestrians also use the stretch of the road about 100 metres from the Varanasi Cantonment railway station. Uttar Pradesh Relief Commissioner Sanjay Kumar said 18 bodies were pulled out. Five National Disaster Response Force teams, with about 250 personnel, rushed to the accident site.

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