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52 killed as bus falls into gorge in north India

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NEW DELHI >> An overcrowded bus fell into a deep gorge in a mountainous area of northern India on Saturday, killing 52 people and injuring 46 others, police said.

The driver lost control of the vehicle on a sharp curve in Himachal Pradesh state, about 620 kilometers (385 miles) north of New Delhi, police officer Raj Kumar said.

The bus then fell more than 100 meters (300 feet) into the gorge, Kumar said.

Forty-six people were hospitalized with injuries, including three in critical condition, police Superintendent Kuldeep Sharma said.

The bus had seats for 60 people and was so overcrowded that some people were riding on its roof, Sharma said.

Police figures show India has the world’s highest road death toll, with more than 110,000 people dying each year in accidents often caused by overcrowding, speeding, and poor vehicle and road maintenance.

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