Bhopal, (Agencies): At least seven people died and 19 were injured when a runaway truck rammed into a roadside Congress meeting in Madhya Pradesh's Dhar district on Thursday.

The meeting was being organised at Silkua village in Kukshi constituency, where bypolls will be held on February 14 along with Sonkutch, when the truck ploughed into the gathering after its brakes failed.

"Seven people died in the incident and 19 were injured. The injured have been sent to Badwani district hospital," Superintendent of Police Rakesh Gupta said in Dhar, about 250 km from Bhopal. The dead included four children and two women.

The driver, yet to be identified, was beaten by the villagers and later taken into police custody.

Dhar's Collector BM Sharma claimed that no official permission was taken by Congress party for the meeting.

But Congress legislator Umang Singhar said they were only interacting with villagers. "I was present on the spot and we were returning after meeting villagers. We were at roadside when the truck hit," he said.