In the worst rail accident in recent years, over 100 passengers were killed and more than 200 injured, nearly half of them grievously, when 14 coaches of the Indore-Patna Express derailed in Kanpur early on Sunday. The tragedy could have been caused due to a rail fracture, according to sources in the Railways.
Four sleeper coaches of the train — S1, S2, S3, S4 — were badly damaged in the accident.
“Over 150 injured people have been rushed to nearby hospitals in the area. All hospitals have been asked to be alert. More than 30 ambulances have been pressed into service,” Commissioner (Kanpur Zone) Iftikharuddin said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled the loss of lives in the train tragedy. “Anguished beyond words on the loss of lives due to the derailing of the Patna-Indore express. My thoughts are with the bereaved families,” he said in a tweet.
Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu has ordered a probe into the tragedy and announced Rs 3.5 lakh ex-gratia for the families of those killed and Rs. 50,000 for those grievously injured.
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Here are latest developments:
Our Correspondent Omar Rashid tells us that the derailed bogies are being removed from the rail tracks.
"We cannot establish a prima facie cause yet. It is a serious accident. Sabarmati Express passed through same route safely just nine minutes prior to the accident," S.K. Agarwal DRM of Jhansi division says.
Passengers' luggage remain scattered near the rail tracks. Photo: Omar Rashid
Bihar rushes a three-member team
A three-member team of Bihar government officials has been sent to Kanpur to coordinate with the local authorities and help with the rescue of passengers from the State who were travelling in the train. The team — Pratayay Amrit, principal secretary of the State disaster management department, Rial IG Amit Kumar and Inspector General Jitendra Kumar — is being flown to Kanpur by a special plane. More...
Two children pulled out alive from wreckage
Two children were pulled out alive from an overturned bogie of the Indore-Patna Express here, offering a glimmer of hope to rescuers looking for survivors among the heaps of metal and scattered baggage.
The two boys aged six and seven were pulled out from the S3 bogie of the train, police officials said.
Nitish Kumar cancels govt. function
In the wake of the Uttar Pradesh derailment, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today cancelled a function to release a report card of his government on completion of one year in office and expressed grief over the mishap that claimed 96 lives and left 226 injured.
In his condolence message, Mr. Kumar described the mishap of the Indore-Patna express as sad and expressed deep grief over the casaulties, praying to the almighty to provide strength to families of the bereaved to cope with the tragedy.
Ex-gratia announced, reports PTI
Rs. 3.5 lakhs to be given to the departed's kin as ex-gratia, tweets Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu. Compensation of Rs.50,000 announced in case of grievous injury and Rs. 25,000 in case of simple injury. Mr. Prabhu adds that this ex-gratia amount is in addition to the compensation that will be available through the Railway Claims Tribunal.
UP CM Akhilesh Yadav announces ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh each for families of those killed in derailment and Rs 50,000 for seriously injured.
Prime Minister announces ex-gratia of Rs. 2 lakhs each for the next of kin of those killed and Rs 50,000 for those seriously injured in the UP train derailment.
Information counter opened at Patna station
Railway opened a counter on Platform No 1 of Patna Junction to provide information to the relatives of the passengers traveling in the ill-fated Indore-Rajendra Nagar express train, reports The Hindu's Amarnath Tewary.
“We’re giving information which we receive here to the relatives making inquiry about those traveling in the ill-fated train…we’ll also provide accommodation in trains for those who want to go to Kanpur”, Mr R K Jha, DRM, Dananpur Rail Division said.
A senior railway officer Mr Bibhuti has been deputed at the Patna railway junction to manage the help window. “We’re also in touch with the Patna district administration and along with them making all arrangement to support the relatives of the passengers”, added Mr Jha.
The railway official also said that the final list of those killed or injured in the accident has not been received yet.
Besides, Sleeper and AC coaches, there were hundreds of passengers in the general bogies so “it will take some time to get the details”.
It is said that many people from Bihar and eastern Uttar Pradesh were coming to their home state as the marriage season has just begun.
Very few relatives of the passengers are coming to the Patna Junction as most of them must have left for Kanpur by now, said a railway official.
Rajnath takes stock of situation
Home Minister Rajnath Singh took stock of the situation and asked the Director General of National Disaster Response Force to rush to the spot.
The Home Minister asked NDRF Chief O.P. Singh to provide all assistance to the Railway authorities and Uttar Pradesh government in relief and rescue operations.
Relatives of those who were killed in the Indore-Rajendra Nagar Express train derailment near Kanpur in Uttar Pradesh are harried lot at Patna Junction. No official information or special arrangement has been made by the railways for them.
The latest information that has reached Patna Junction is that the death toll has gone up to 63 with over 150 injured.
Stranded passengers moved
The Ministry of Railways' twitter handled tweeted the following update:
Stranded passengers have been moved from the accident site to Malasa station. A special train from Malasa has been arranged. The Injured passengers have been moved to Kanpur Dehat hospital.
Meanwhile, Ministry of Railway tweeted that Suresh Prabhu would visit the train accident spot in Kanpur Dehat to monitor the rescue operations.
My thoughts are with the bereaved families: PM Modi
"Anguished beyond words on the loss of lives due to the derailing of the Patna-Indore express. My thoughts are with the bereaved families," tweets PM Narendra Modi.
"Strictest possible action will be taken"
Minister of Railways, Suresh Prabhu —
"All rescue relief work is on to deal with the unfortunate accident. All medical and other help has been rushed. Enquiry has been ordered. Situation monitored closely. Medical assistance of all kinds is offered. Rail mobile medical units have been rushed to site. All injured rushed to hospitals, immediate medical help given. Ex gratia to unfortunate passengers who died and to injured will be given. An enquiry team will start investigation for cause of accident immediately.
"All necessary assistance will provided to the affected, we are taking care. Strictest possible action will be taken against those who could be responsible for accident."
Several trains along the route have been diverted or cancelled, reports PTI.
Jhansi-Lucknow Intercity and Jhansi-Kanpur passenger train cancelled.
Train numbers 12542,12522,12541,12534 have been diverted.
Hospitals put on alert
All hospitals in the neighbouring districts have been activated, reports ANI. Private hospitals of Kanpur put on alert to accommodate patients, says UP CM Akhilesh Yadav. Akhilesh also asks the Chief Secretary of UP to monitor relief operations. "Pool in resources from neighbouring districts to enable quicker relief operations," he says.
Senior officers rush to the spot
Senior officers have been ordered to go to the spot immediately. Minister of State and senior officials are on their way to the accident site. Local MP, MLAs other functionaries have been rushed - Ministry of Railways
S2 coach "severely damaged"
The incident took place at around 3 a.m. near Pukhrayan, about 100 kms from here, reports PTI
Northern Central Railways spokesperson Vijay Kumar said that doctors and senior railway officials had reached the spot. The cause of the derailment was not known immediately.
Buses have been pressed into service to help passengers complete their journey, Kumar said, adding that there are possibilities of casualties in the S2 coach which is severely damaged.
District administration along with railway officials are carrying out rescue and relief operations. Four AC coaches have also been derailed, he added.
Meanwhile, DIG (Kanpur range) Rajesh Modak said that two bogies of the train have been severely damaged and many people are feared dead.