20 killed after truck falls into drain in Gujarat's Bhavnagar

Bus accident in Rajkot Bhavnagar state highway- File

Among the injured, eight were reported to be in a critical condition, Minister of State for Home Pradipsinh Jadeja said, adding the deceased included four children and eight women.

The passengers belonged to a wedding party. Everybody was laughing, singing traditional wedding songs and having a good time when they felt a bad jolt, he recalled.

Police suspect the driver may have miscalculated and was forced to try and dodge oncoming traffic.

The accident happened in Bhavnagar district about 200 kilometres (125 miles) from the state capital Ahmedabad. Everyone was screaming and shouting.

The groom's parents were also killed in the accident.

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The truck beds are often jammed beyond capacity by relatives and guests.

Numerous injured were in critical condition and officials fear the death toll could rise further. The investigations have been launched into the matter by the concerned authorities. The driver was unharmed.

India has some of the world's deadliest roads.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed grief and extended his condolences on the loss of lives due to the accident.

Addressing the media, Chief Minister Rupani said, "Compensation of Rs. 4 lakh for next of kin of those who died in the accident and full medical treatment will be given to the injured. May those who have been injured recover at the earliest". I pray for the departed souls.

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