New Delhi — Eleven people were electrocuted to death when their truck, decorated as a temple chariot, touched an overhead electric power transmission line during a Hindu festival procession in southern India, police said. Two children were among the dead, the Reuters news agency reports.
The New Delhi Television channel said the truck, crowded with devotees, caught fire from the electric spark.
Reuters says the truck was nine-feet high, adding that Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted his condolences to families of those killed.
Reuters says at least 11 other people were injured, some when they fell form the truck.
The deaths occurred early Wednesday when the temple chariot procession was underway in Thanjavur district, 210 miles south of Chennai, the state capital, police said. The procession was organized by a local Hindu temple. Other details weren’t immediately available.
Thanjavur is an important center of South Indian religion, art, and architecture. The area is known for its heritage temples.