A man walks past the mangled remains of a bus after an accident in Nashik, India, on Wednesday. AP
Twenty-six people including a seven-year-old girl were killed after the bus they were travelling in crashed with an autorickshaw and fell into a well in western India, officials said Wednesday.
Emergency crews worked through the night to rescue survivors and retrieve bodies and used a crane to remove the red-and-white bus from the well, as hundreds thronged the crash site after the accident late on Tuesday.
Rescue operations ended early on Wednesday in Nashik district, around 254 kilometres (158 miles) from India's financial capital Mumbai.
"We conducted rescue operations throughout the night and recovered 26 bodies. Another 32 injured have been sent for treatment," National Disaster Response Force spokesman Sachidanand Gawde told AFP.
The bus driver was among the dead.
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered condolences for the "unfortunate" incident.
"In this hour of sadness, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover at the earliest," Modi tweeted.
India has some of the world's highest traffic fatalities with more than 150,000 deaths annually due to poor roads, badly maintained vehicles and reckless driving.
Experts say many highways and roads suffer from design flaws, making rides a daily risk, particularly during winter when visibility drops considerably.
The model was the only victim whose body was not transferred to her home country India for cremation in view of her severe injuries.
Twenty-one people with injuries were hospitalised in Kullu, a town in Himachal Pradesh state, police officer Amar Singh said.
"Some bodies were visible during the helicopter recce. They were on the same route as the climbers had taken," the source said, requesting anonymity.
A special set of UN stamps featuring endangered migratory species was released on Monday at a function to coincide with the 13th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS COP13).
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