At least 27 students and two teachers of Wazir Ram Singh Pathania Memorial School died after a school bus they were travelling in fell into a deep gorge at Himachal Pradesh’s Nurpur district on Monday evening.
Superintendent of Nurpur district Santosh Patial confirmed the development.
According to government officials, around 27 schoolchildren were killed in the accident, along with two teachers and student. The fatal accident occurred near Gurchal village on Nurpur-Chamba road.
Expressing grief over the deaths of students and teachers, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted, "I am deeply anguished by the loss of lives due to a bus accident in Kangra, Himachal Pradesh. My prayers and solidarity with those who lost their near and dear ones in the accident."
The state Chief Minister Jairam Thakur announced Rs 5 lakh each for the family of the accident victims and ordered a magisterial probe into the accident.
“NDRF team has been engaged into the rescue operation. Stringent actions will be taken against school and government officials if any lapses found,” the CM added.
According to police officials, all the students boarded on the bus were from Ram Singh Pathania Memorial School. The bus was on its way to drop the children home after the school closed at 3 pm.
The injured were rush to the district local hospital for medical attention. Himachal Pradesh Police, National Disaster Management and fire-brigade officials with help of villager are rescuing the trapped.
A senior police personnel on request of anonymity said, "All students killed in the accident are below 10 years. Nine students died at the incidet site, while others succumbed during treatment or on way to the nearest hospital."