India: 31 killed as bus plunges into gorge

2012-08-08 14:00

Gauhati — A crowded passenger bus veered off a mountain road and plunged into a gorge in India's remote northeast on Wednesday, killing at least 31 people, police said.

State police chief N Ramachandran said another 34 passengers were injured in the predawn accident in Tongseng village in Meghalaya state.

The bus was heading to Gauhati, the main city in neighbouring Assam state, when the driver lost control of the vehicle and it plunged into the gorge.

Seven people with critical injuries were moved to a big hospital in the nearby town of Silchar, police said.

Ramachandran said around 65 people were travelling in the 40-seater bus.

Police figures show India has the world's highest road death toll, with more than 110 000 people dying each year in accidents commonly caused by overcrowding, speeding, and poor vehicle and road maintenance.