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The New Delhi Television channel said the truck, crowded with devotees, also caught fire due to the electric spark.
The deaths occurred early on Wednesday when the temple chariot procession was under way in Thanjavur district, 340 kilometres (210 miles) south of Chennai, the state capital, police said. The procession was organised by a local Hindu temple. Other details were not immediately available.
At least 15 other people were hospitalised after the incident at around 3:00 am (2130 GMT) in the city of Thanjavur.
"The top of the chariot was heavily decorated and that is the part that hit the wire," senior police officer V Balakrishnan said.
The victims were part of the team that was pulling the chariot. At least three people died on the spot.
Hundreds of devotees took part in the procession which has taken place annually for around 90 years.
A senior police official told broadcaster NDTV that the power line along the temple route is usually turned off but this time it was kept on.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted that he was "pained" by the accident and announced relief of approximately $2,600 to the families of the dead.
Thanjavur is an important centre of South Indian religion, art, and architecture. The area is known for its heritage temples.Agencies
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