The toll in the accident that took place on Monday after a bus plunged into a canal rose to 42 in West Bengal’s Murshidabad district, ANI reported. Several passengers are reported missing. The North Bengal State Transport Corporation bus was travelling from Karimpur in Nadia district to Malda.

The bus, carrying at least 60 passengers, fell into Ghagra canal after crashing through a bridge in Daulatabad area of Murshidabad. The driver of the bus was allegedly speaking over the phone when the accident took place, PTI reported.

The locals were enraged after the rescue work was delayed. Some pelted stones at the police vehicle. The police had to resort to tear gas shells and baton charging to disperse the crowd.

After eight hours, the rescue team pulled the bus out of the deep water canal using cranes. The rescue operation was called off after 9.30 pm because of poor visibility.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee visited the accident site to monitor the situation. She said the accident was painful and unfortunate. The state government announced Rs 5 lakh compensation to the families of the deceased and Rs 50,000 compensation to the injured. Those who were severely injured in the accident will receive Rs 1 lakh.