At least 30 passengers, including nine children and 13 women, were killed when a speeding bus fell into a 12-feet deep canal, above, in Mandya district in the southern Indian state of Karnataka on Saturday afternoon.
The private bus carrying about 50 passengers plunged into VC canal at 12.15pm near Kanakanamaradi in Pandavapura administrative division.
As the vehicle began to sink, two school boys and a man jumped out of its windows and swam to safety. The bus driver and conductor too swam out of the canal and fled.
Witnesses who jumped into the canal to save lives could not pull out the victims as the bus doors were jammed due to the impact of the crash.
Divers and personnel from the fire and emergency services arrived soon, broke open the doors and pulled out 28 bodies.
Meanwhile, authorities blocked the flow of river water into the canal to facilitate rescue operations which went on until night.
The death toll is expected to rise when rescue operations resume on Sunday.
Witnesses said the bus was speeding and the accident occurred when the driver negotiated a turn. According to police, there were no barriers at the point where the bus veered off the road and fell into the canal.
President Ramnath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi said their prayers are with the family of those who lost their lives.
Karnataka Chief Minister announced a compensation of $7,076 to families of each of the dead.