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Speeding bus falls on cars

Calcutta, July 20: Twenty-six people were injured when a private bus hit a pothole and overturned on two cars parked near St Thomas School in Kidderpore on Saturday night.

Twenty-four of the injured were in the bus and two were in one of the parked cars.

Passengers said the bus driver was speaking frequently on his cellphone while driving at “break-neck speed”. The driver was speeding even though one flank of Diamond Harbour Road had been closed for tramline repairs.

The identity of those in the car could not be ascertained. The Maruti Swift Dzire and the Hyundai Santro were mangled.

Eighteen people were admitted to SSKM Hospital and eight in CMRI. A CMRI official said “two-three persons” were receiving treatment at the hospital while the others had been discharged.

“The bus was travelling at break-neck speed. The driver was speaking frequently on his cellphone,” Narayan Sarkar, a bus passenger, said from his bed at SSKM.

Sarkar, who was travelling to Akra near Budge Budge on the No. 259 bus from Howrah, had suffered head injuries.

Amit Das, who was travelling on the bus with wife Rinki, said: “The bus careened and overturned on two cars parked on the roadside.”

Soumitra Kundu, who had boarded the bus from Esplanade, said residents pulled the passengers out through the doors.

The deputy commissioner of police (port), V. Solomon Nesa Kumar, said: “The pothole will be repaired quickly. The conditions of the injured are stable.”