Four persons drowned in the Periyar, two others died in a road accident and another six were injured in two incidents involving Malayattoor pilgrims within the Perumbavoor police station limits on Good Friday. The accidents occurred within a span of an hour and at spots hardly 3 km apart.
The four, among a group of 12 pilgrims returning from the Malayattoor church, drowned when they ventured into the Periyar to take bath beneath the bridge at Kalady around 11.30 a.m. The deceased have been identified as Joseph, 15, Suresh 22, Rajesh, 27, and Antony, 33, all relatives and residents of New Colony in Munnar.
The disaster struck when Joseph, the youngest among the lot, lost his sandals in the water and Suresh went further into the river to fetch them.
But he lost his foothold when he unknowingly stepped into an area of great depth and was caught in undercurrents. The other three lost their lives in their attempts to save him.
In the other incident, a man and a five-year-old child who were part of an eight-member group returning from Malayattoor died in an accident at a sharp turn at Kanjirakkadu on the Angamaly-Perumbavoor MC Road around 12.30 p.m. Antony, 60, a resident of Udumbannoor in Thodupuzha, and his grandchild Riyan were among the occupants of a car that collided head-on with a bus coming from the opposite direction. Though they were rushed to a private hospital and the Perumbavoor taluk hospital, they succumbed to their injuries.