The tragic incident occurred at Shindavane ghat near Urali Kanchan -- about 40 kms from Pune city.
The deceased have been identified as Ramdas Raut (65), Jijabai Namdev Dhakulkar (55) and Draupadabai Bhikaji Mhetre (50), all residents of Devadi village in Akola district. Among the 42 wounded, seven have received serious head injuries.
According to Loni Kalbhor police, the tempo was at high speed when the driver lost control, due to which the vehicle fell 150 ft into the valley. Since the accident spot was at a ghat section, rescue work was affected. Beginning their journey from Pandharpur on Saturday evening, the pilgrims had next visited Jejuri, and were headed to Alandi on Monday morning.
Speaking to MiD DAY, inspector Ashok Kshirsagar from Loni Kalbhor police station said, “The injured persons have been admitted to private hospitals in Urali Kanchan and Hadapsar, and also Sassoon General Hospital in Pune.
“The pilgrims had plans to visit all the sacred places in the state. Their religious head, Chopde Maharaj, had requested us to arrange the tempo,” said Ravi Indale, owner of the vehicle.