Monday, July 29, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

10 Sikh pilgrims die in mishap

Khatima, July 28
In the second major mishap involving Sikh pilgrims within a month in Uttaranchal, 10 persons, including four women and two children, were killed and over 80 injured when a truck fell into a deep khud in Champawat district today, a senior police official said.

All injured have been admitted to various hospitals, where condition of nearly 12 of them was stated to be critical, Champawat Superintendent of Police R A Gautam said.

The truck was carrying about 100 Sikh pilgrims from Amritsar to the famous Gurdwara Reetha Sahib when it fell into the khud while its driver tried to avoid a collision with a jeep at Sinyari village, he said.

Thirteen Sikh pilgrims from Gurdaspur in Punjab were killed and 28 injured when their bus returning from Hemkund Sahib fell into a khud in Chamoli district on June 30.

On June 16, 26 Badrinath pilgrims from Gujarat were killed when their bus plunged into the Alaknanda river in the Baldora area of chamoli district.

Nearly 150 persons, mostly pilgrims, were killed in different road accidents in the state during the past two months.

Governor S S Barnala and Chief Minister N D Tiwari expressed shock over the accident and directed the district officials to provide proper medical care to the injured. PTI

Salman allowed to go abroad

Jodhpur, July 28
A local court has allowed Bollywood actor Salman Khan, the prime accused in the case of poaching of black buck, to go abroad as yet another prosecution witness turned hostile.

Court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate S.K. Mathur yesterday permitted Salman Khan to leave India to inaugurate a jewellery show in Kuwait from August 1 on the application filed by defence counsel Hastimal Saraswat.

Meanwhile, one more prosecution witness turned hostile when Santosh Vaishnav, an employee of Ummed Bhavan Palace Hotel, where the actor stayed four years ago, retracted his statement recorded by the police in 1998, in which he had identified the waiter who served meals containing meat of hunted animals to Salman Khan.

Vaishnav, a clerk in the hotel, said he made no statement regarding the waiters doing room service to the main accused. The record of employees’ attendance was kept by his officer Mangi Lal Jain and there were two persons named Kamal Kishore on the hotel staff — a waiter and another in engineering section. PTI

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