Two persons died and four others were injured when a Tata Sumo carrying Sabarimala pilgrims from Pampa collided with a speeding private bus at Dharmagiri junction near Kumbanad on the Thiruvalla-Kozhencherry Road on Saturday afternoon.
The deceased have been identified as Salimkumar (45) of Chaturthyakari in Alappuzha and the driver Jacob Thomas (35) of Thengana-Kurumbinadom near Changanacherry.
The condition of the cleaner of the Tata Sumo, C.J. Benny (33) is said to be critical and he has been admitted to the Pushpagiri Medical College in Thiruvalla.
Archana, seven-year old daughter of the deceased Salimkumar and two other pilgrims, N.P. Ajith (35) of Mithrakkari and Sunil (29) of Venattukad in Alappuzha district are the others injured who have been admitted to PMC.
According to an eyewitness account, the incident occurred around 2.30 p.m. He said the Tata Sumo had collided with the speeding private bus when it took a turn to save a motorcyclist crossing the road from the Dharmagiri Mandiram Road.
The Sumo van driver died on the spot and the pilgrim Salimkumar succumbed to his injuries on the way to PMC, later, police said.
A few passengers in the bus sustained minor injuries in the mishap and they were given first aid at the nearby Fellowship Mission Hospital, later.
District Superintendent of Police, K.K. Chellapan, accompanied by Circle Inspector of Police K.R. Sivasuthan Pillai and Sub Inspector Santhosh Kumar, visited the spot. Koipram police have registered a case.