Apart from the driver and the cleaner, five passengers managed to survive the ghastly accident at Kothakota in Andhra Pradesh's Mahabubnagar district that claimed the lives of 45 persons early on Wednesday.

The five passengers who survived the mishap have been identified as Srikar, 32, son of Vijaysarathi (Hyderabad), Yogesh, 28, son of Yogana (Bangalore), Mazhar Pasha, 31, son of Farooq Pasha (Bangalore, Jai Singh, 25, son of Morailal Chowdhary (Uttar Pradesh) and Rajesh, 30, son of Bhaskar (Hyderabad).

The bus driver Fairoz and cleaner Faiyaz too managed to escape from the bus soon after it caught fire early on Wednesday morning.

Jameel Jabbar, one of the partner of Jabbar Travels, said the bus was being driven by Fairoz, who has been a driver with them for the last twenty two years. He also denied knowledge of how the mishap took place as the driver had been hospitalised.

The other passengers on board the bus, according to the passenger list provided by Jabbar Travels, includes Mohammad Asif, Phani Kumar, Shakti Kant, Amer, Roohiya, Ramaraju Dinesh, Vedapathi, Adori, Jyoti, Prashanth Gupta, Mohsin, Venkatesh, Chandrashekhar, Kiran, Shoaib, Azhar, Shree Krishna, Azmathulla, Gali Mary, Gourav T, Akshay, Raghuveer, Jalaluddin, Suresh Babu, Mohammad Sardar, Priyanka, Harish, Manjunath, PNV Rajesh, Girdhar NS, Farooq Ali, Ashutosh, Sonu and Yuvraj.

As the travel agency takes only the names and the contact numbers of the passengers while booking the tickets, police said it will be difficult to ascertain the addresses of the passengers. However, Mr Jabbar said about 15 out of the 44 passengers could be from Bangalore.

“I am in touch with my brother Shakeel, who has gone to the spot to co-ordinate with officials and extend support”, he said.

Chief Minister expresses shock

Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who has expressed shock over the tragedy, has deputed Deputy Commissioner of Raichur district S N Nagaraj to the accident spot to help the relatives bring the bodies.

IANS adds

Manmohan voices sorrow over tragedy

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh expressed grief over the death of 45 bus passengers in a horrific accident in Andhra Pradesh on Wednesday.

“The prime minister has expressed sorrow over the loss of lives ... in Mehabubnagar,” an official statement said.

“He has extended his heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families and wished a speedy recovery to those injured in the accident.”

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