Odisha govt files FIR against NHAI a day after fatal accident in Keonjhar

Keonjhar: After eight persons died yesterday in a tragic road mishap, a team of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) officials along with Keonjhar Superintendent of Police Kusalkar Nitin Dagdu and several other police officials today reviewed accident-prone spots on NH-20 in the district.

The team will find out the ways as to how road mishaps can be prevented on NH-20 here, an official said.

According to a source, a part of the national highway stretching from Rimuli up to Panikoili has turned into a death trap. At least 637 road accidents have taken place in Keonjhar in the last 10 months and as many as 317 persons have died due to the mishaps. However, most of the accidents occurred on NH-20 in the district. Faulty road construction is said to be the main reason behind the fatalities.

The district administration had previously lodged an FIR against NHAI authorities in this regard. A petition was also filed with Orissa High Court in Cuttack. A team from the court earlier visited the accident-prone spots and advised the NHAI to immediately rectify the faulty roads.

Notably, the Transport Department road safety officer Rajesh Sethy today lodged an FIR with Ghatagaon police against the NHAI project director (PD) holding the latter responsible for yesterday’s accident. Police have registered a case (No-274/23) and initiated a probe, SDPO Sudarshan Gangei said.

Worth mentioning, eight persons were killed and several others sustained grievous injuries yesterday as a van in which they were travelling hit a truck on NH-20 near Balijodi in Keonjhar district.

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