In a tragic accident on Thursday evening (May 14), at least 10 people were electrocuted when a tractor carrying a group of agricultural workers hit an electric pole alongside an uneven road near Raparla village in Nagullapadu mandal of Prakasam district. Agriculture workers unions have staged protest demonstrations across districts in the state demanding proper compensation to the deceased families.
Of the 10 deceased, seven were women and two were students pursuing intermediate. Besides, several others have been injured and are under treatment in the district's RIMS hospital. According to reports, the tractor trolley was carrying 22 agricultural workers who were returning from work in a nearby chilli farm. The tractor hit an electric pole alongside the uneven road it was moving on.
According to New Indian Express, with the impact of the collision, “the high-tension electric wires snapped and fell on those travelling in the trolley leading to the instantaneous death of eight of them.” The agriculture workers hail from Raparla, Machavaram and Chavatapalem villages in Naguluppalapadu mandal.
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Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy expressed grief over the incident and directed district authorities to provide an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh to the families of the deceased.
Agricultural workers unions staged protest demonstrations on Friday across the state demanding proper compensation to the deceased and injured workers and their families.
It is unfortunate that young students had to go to fields for work due to the hardships of lockdown, said C Penchalaiah, Bharat Kisan Mazdoor Union (BKMU) Chittoor’s district secretary. Speaking to NewsClick, he said, “The state government is showing a discriminatory attitude towards the agriculture workers by announcing a small amount as ex-gratia for the victims in the accidents. The government must provide Rs 1 crore ex-gratia each to the deceased families, in similar lines with compensation provided to the victims of recent gas leakage from LG Polymers company which killed at least 13 people,” demanded Penchalaiah.
Left parties in the state including Communist Party of India and Communist Party of India (Marxist) are demanding the government to provide one government job each to the deceased families.
In the last fifty days of lockdown for containment of the spread of COVID-19 pandemic, while the state government has allowed agriculture related work to continue, with restrictions on movement and transportation facilities, farmers have had to face unprecedented losses.
“When public transport is stopped but farmers have to go about their work, they depend on all modes of transportation,” said Revathi, senior journalist through Twitter.
Accident visuals: Unfortunate incident in Prakasham district, #AndhraPradesh. Tractor carrying about 15mirchi workers rams into electric pole instantly killing 10.When public transport is stopped but farmers have to go about their work, they depend on all modes of transportation pic.twitter.com/ga7o2CtHzW
— Revathi (@revathitweets) May 14, 2020
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