- Private luxury bus crashed in north Gujarat's Banaskantha
- Driver lost control on slippery road, rescuers said
- Passengers were returning from a temple
Twenty-one people were killed and over 50 were injured after the "private luxury bus" they were travelling in overturned in north Gujarat's Banaskantha on Monday, news agency Press Trust of India reported.
The driver of the bus, carrying people home after visiting a temple, lost control on a slippery road in the hilly region due to heavy rain, rescuers who are at the site said.
"The private luxury bus, carrying around 70 passengers, overturned at Trishulia Ghat," senior police officer Ajit Rajian said. "Twenty-one of them died. The bus slipped on the wet road when the driver applied brakes. We pulled out 53 people alive from the bus using a crane," Mr Rajian said.
In visuals, two bulldozers are seen trying to clear the bus from the road at Trishulia Ghat, a hilly patch on the Ambaji-Danta highway, 160 km from Ahmedabad.
"Devastating news from Banaskantha. I am extremely pained by the loss of lives due to an accident. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. The local administration is providing all possible help to the injured. May they recover soon," Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted.
Devastating news from Banaskantha. I am extremely pained by the loss of lives due to an accident. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) September 30, 2019
The local administration is providing all possible help to the injured. May they recover soon.
Home Minister Amit Shah said he has spoken to the state and local authorities. "Deeply anguished by the loss of lives due to a tragic bus accident in Banaskantha, Gujarat. Have spoken to the state and local authorities, they are doing everything possible to help the people in need. My deepest condolences. May the injured recover at the earliest," Mr Shah tweeted.
The injured people were taken to hospitals in Danta and Palanpur, the police officer said. District Collector Sandip Sagale is at the accident site. Mr Sagale said 35 of the injured people are in a critical condition.
"We have deployed more doctors at both the hospitals to treat the injured and carry out post-mortem. All the passengers were residents of the same village and were returning from Ambaji temple," said Mr Sagale.
Trishulia Ghat is the same spot where nine people died in June last when a multi-utility vehicle overturned after its brakes failed at a sharp turn. Mr Sagale said the state government plans to convert the road passing through Trishulia Ghat into a four-lane road.
With inputs from PTI