At least eight persons were killed and 35 others were injured on Tuesday when a mini-truck carrying them skidded off the road and fell into a gorge in the forested area of Odisha's Kandhamal district, a senior police officer said.
A mini-truck from Suluma was carrying 50-60 people for a programme organised by a church when the driver lost control. The mini-truck slipped down a ghat near Kandhamal's Baliguda.
"At least eight people, including a woman and a girl, died on the spot," the official said said.
A team of doctors from the district headquarters reached a government hospital in Brahmanigaon to provide emergency treatment to the victims, while five ambulance vans were assigned to shift the seriously injured to MKCG Medical College Hospital in Berhampur, the officer said.
He added that police officers, forest personnel and local residents helped in the rescue operations.
Meanwhile, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh for the family members of the eight dead. CM Patnaik also directed officials to provide free treatment to the injured.
Get the latest election news, live updates and election schedule for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 on ndtv.com/elections. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram for updates from each of the 543 parliamentary seats for the 2019 Indian general elections. Election results will be out on May 23.