Gujarat bus accident toll rises to 42

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Ahmedabad, Feb 6 (IANS) The toll in Friday’s bus accident in Gujarat rose to 42, as five more bodies were pulled out from the wreckage on Saturday. Chief Minister Anandiben Patel paid a visit to the injured people in hospitals and families of the deceased and offered all help from the state government.

The government has declared a compensation of Rs.4 lakh each to the kin of those killed. The chief minister personally handed over compensation cheques to the families.

The bus from Navsari to Ukai, carrying more than 60 passengers, fell into the Purna river some 40 feet below, after breaking the sidewalls of a bridge on the Navsari-Bardoli highway on Friday evening.

The driver and conductor of the state-run Gujarat State Road Transport Corporation bus were among those killed.

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Many schools and colleges in Navsari town remained closed for the day after paying condolences to the students killed in the accident.

Among the deceased were eight students of three schools and colleges in the town who were returning home after attending classes in the evening.

At least four other students are undergoing treatment in hospitals.

Meanwhile, a large number of students on Saturday turned up at various hospitals to donate blood to the injured.

Even as the exact reason for the driver losing control over the bus was still not known on Saturday, Anandiben Patel said she would order an inquiry into the incident to enable the authorities to take necessary preventive measures to avoid such accidents in future.

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