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36 injured in Bypass bus collision

One of the injured passengers

Thirty-six passengers were injured, seven of them seriously, when a state bus rammed into another waiting at a signal at the Ruby roundabout on the EM Bypass on Wednesday.

Most of the passengers suffered bruises and cuts on their chins and lips or suffered head injuries. One of the injured, a final-year medical student at Nil Ratan Sarkar Medical College, had to undergo a cosmetic surgery. I was numb after the crash. Others alerted me that my chin and lips were bleeding, Sucheta Chowdhury, 23, told doctors.

The nature of injuries suggest that the passengers lost balance after the crash and hit something in front, most probably a seat, doctors said.

A Calcutta Tramways Company (CTC) bus on route C-14/1 (Madhyamgram-Tollygunge) was waiting at the traffic signal in front of the passport office, when a Calcutta State Transport Corporation (CSTC) bus (S4) hit it from behind.

I felt a sudden jerk and my head hit against the seat in front, said Pratik Ghosh, 25, who was seated at the rear of the CTC bus. The Airtel employee sustained an injury on his neck and left hand. I cant move my neck. Its too painful, he said as he was escorted out of the hospital by two friends.

Khokhon Naskar, 48, who sustained head injuries, fell unconscious for a while after the accident. Three of his arteries are blocked. He was unconscious for a while after the accident, said S.B. Purakayastha, the chief executive officer of Ruby General Hospital.

The mangled CSTC bus. Pictures by Bishwarup Dutta

Passengers said the accident could have turned fatal. Two seats at the rear right end of the CTC bus bent forward by a foot under the impact of the crash. The front left part of the other bus got crushed in such a way that it touched the front left seat. The windshield of the CSTC bus and the rear screen of the CTC bus were smashed.

A youth who manages car parking on the feeder road near the accident spot said the two buses had been racing, but police officers said the passengers did not complain of speeding.

The driver of S-4 fled after the accident. We have asked CSTC officials to contact him and produce him before us, said a police officer. A mechanical test will be conducted on the bus to ascertain if its brakes had failed.

On Monday, a two-month- old girl died when a minibus toppled and rammed into a road divider on the Park Circus connector.

Accidents

Two persons were injured in separate accidents in the city on Wednesday.

Sipar Alam Sheikh is fighting for his life in a private hospital after a taxi hit his bike from behind on the Rasbehari connector near Kasba police station at 12.30am. He suffered serious head injuries.

At the Dorina crossing in Esplanade, the driver of a lorry was injured after a tanker rammed into it.

The offending drivers were arrested in both cases.