Bhubaneswar: A woman from the Kendrapara district of Odisha died of burn injuries and 36 others were injured when an Odisha-bound passenger bus caught fire in the Kharagpur area of West Bengal on Friday night.
The deceased was identified as Pushpanjali Das (34) from Nolia village under the Marshaghai police station limits of Kendrapara district.
Out of the 36 passengers, 25 were from Odisha.
The ill-fated bus was travelling from Kolkata to Paradip in Odisha. On receiving information, the fire personnel rushed to the spot and controlled the fire, informed West Bengal Minister Manas Ranjan Bhunia.
Deceased Pushpanjali (34) along with her husband Rajendra Das, who works in Kolkata and their two daughters were travelling in the ill-fated bus to observe Diwali at their village.
The family boarded the bus at Babughat in Kolkata at around 7.30 pm.
According to sources, the fire started in the bus from the driver’s cabin at around 9.30 pm and it spread out to the entire bus near Madhapur under Kharagpur police station limits.
Some passengers jumped out of the bus by breaking the window panes.
It is reported that Pushpanjali along with her family had managed to come out of the bus. But she was seriously injured while trying to save an aged couple.
The cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained. But it is suspected that the fire may have been caused by some explosive materials being transported in the bus.
Balasore district administration has sent a team of doctors and an ambulance to attend to the injured and bring them back to Odisha.
According to sources, the injured included 16 from Kendrapara district, 2 from Paradip area of Jagatsinghpur district and 7 from Jajpur district.