Hyderabad: At least 14 passengers, half of them students, were killed and 40 were injured when a crowded bus slid down the road in Andhra Pradesh's Anantapur district Wednesday, police said.
The accident occurred between Penukonda and Madakasira, about 450 km from here.
The toll may go up as the condition of 13 of the injured was stated to be critical.
The bus belonging to the state-owned Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corp (APSRTC) was proceeding from Madakasira to Penukonda when the driver reportedly lost control while trying to avoid hitting an auto-rickshaw.
According to witnesses, the bus slid and fell off the road in an area, about 15 km from Penukonda town. Work was going on there to widen the road.
The injured were shifted to hospitals in Hindupur, Anantapur and Bangalore.
The victims include seven students, two women and a police constable. Some of the injured said the negligence of the driver caused the accident. They said he was driving fast and did not heed to their warning.
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu expressed shock and grief over the accident.
Naidu announced compensation of Rs.5 lakh each for the families of the dead and Rs.2 lakh each for grievously injured.
Deputy Chief Minister and Home Minister N. Chinna Rajappa announced a probe into the incident.