At least 52 people were killed and 46 others injured in a road mishap in Himachal Pradesh on Saturday.

The accident occurred at around 9:00 am near Rajera, when an overcrowded private bus heading from Dulera to Chamba plunged and fell into the 250-feet deep gorge located in the ravine.

Reports said that the driver lost control of the vehicle when one of the bus tyres ruptured at a hairpin bend on the mountainous road.

Thirty nine passengers as well as the driver died on the spot. Among those killed were 18 women. Out of the remaining 46 passengers, who were rushed to a nearby hospital in critical condition, 13 died of injuries.

According to reports, the 42-seater bus was carrying more than 100 passengers, most of them belonging to Chamba district.

Most the bodies were recovered from the accident site, but the death toll is expected to rise as the state of those injured are said to be critical, officials said.

Administrator of state Sunil Chaudhry confirmed the accident on Sunday and said that several passengers sat atop the roof of the bus when the tragedy took place Daily Mail reported.

Meanwhile, Himachal Pradesh's chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal announced a relief fund of ₹100,000 to each family of the deceased.

The local administration distributed an aid of ₹10,000 each to the relatives of the injured victims and a medical aid of ₹5000 to the ones seriously injured in the mishap. A magisterial enquiry was also launched to determine the actual cause of the accident.