At least 26 passengers were killed on Monday after a private bus fell into the swollen Barna river in Raisen district of Madhya Pradesh, police said.

The mishap took place this afternoon, 100 km away from the district headquarters. The bus carrying over 60-70 people fell into the river after its tyre burst while crossing the bridge, breaking the railing, they said.

So far, 26 bodies have been recovered from the river.

Only two passengers were brought out alive, police said, adding the toll is likely to go up as search for missing passengers is on.

Raisen Superintendent of Police (SP) IP Kulshrestha said the 52-seater private bus was overcrowded and was on its way to Jabalpur from state capital Bhopal.

Further details are awaited.