At least 10 people were killed and 12 others injured after a minibus rammed into a parked truck in the western Indian state of Maharashtra Thursday, police said.
The accident occurred on a national highway near Chandwad in the state's Nashik district, some 160 km from state capital Mumbai.
"The minibus carrying some 25 people, including two drivers and a helper, hit the stationary truck from behind after its driver lost control of the vehicle, following a sudden tyre burst. The impact of the crash was such that 10 people died on the spot," a police official said.
Those injured have been admitted to a local hospital, where the condition of five are said to be serious. "The death toll may go up later in the day as the five are battling for their lives in Chandwad Civil Hospital after sustaining head injuries," he said.
The victims were returning home in Thane district from a pilgrimage in the neighboring state of Madhya Pradesh's Ujjain district.
Eye-witnesses told cops that the minibus was travelling at high speed and went out of control after its front tyre bursted suddenly, leading to the fatal crash.
A probe has been ordered into the incident, the official said. "A case has been registered and a manhunt launched to track down the truck driver who fled the spot after the accident. We will also question the injured passengers of the bus once they are out of hospital," he added.
This is the second major road accident in the state in the last one week. Some 10 people died in a car-truck collision in the state's Yavatmal area on June 1.
India has one of the highest numbers of road fatalities in the world. Road accidents occur mostly due to poor driving or badly maintained roads and vehicles.