MP train accident: 29 killed, 25 injured in twin Indian Railways train derailments

By: | Updated: August 5, 2015 3:20 PM

MP train accident: Twenty-nine people were killed as two express trains derailed within minutes of each other on flooded tracks while crossing a railway bridge in Harda district of Madhya Pradesh.

train accident in MPMP train accident: Police and members of the rescue operation at the crash site of Indian Railways Kamayani, Janata Express train near Harda, Madhya Pradesh. (ANI)

Twenty-nine people were killed as two express trains derailed within minutes of each other on flooded tracks while crossing a railway bridge in Harda district of Madhya Pradesh in the dead of night and plunged into the swollen Machak river.

There were conflicting versions on the number of casualties in the twin derailment at around 1130 pm last night involving the Varanasi-bound Kamayani Express from Mumbai and the Mumbai-bound Janta express that originated from Patna. The accident occurred between Khirkiya and Bhirangi stations on Khandwa-Irasi sections, 160 km from Bhopal.

MP Government spokesman Anupam Rajan said, “29 bodies, including those of 13 men, 11 women and five children, have been recovered so far from the mishap site between Khirkiya and Harda, about 160 km from Bhopal.”

Over 250 passengers have been rescued, a railway official said.

 

Officials and members of the rescue operation stand in a carriage of a derailed train near Harda, Madhya Pradesh. (ANI)Officials and members of the rescue operation stand in a carriage of a derailed train near Harda, Madhya Pradesh. (ANI)

Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, however, told Parliament that 12 passengers were killed.

“The prima facie cause of the incident is stated to be ‘flash flood due to heavy rains’,” Prabhu told the Rajya Sabha amid the din by slogan-shouting opposition members.

The Railway Ministry has ordered an inquiry into the twin derailment and announced an enhanced ex-gratia of Rs two lakh each to the next of the kin of deceased.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed distress and pain over the loss of lives in the accidents and said authorities are doing everything possible on the ground.

Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) Bhopal, Alok Kumar said, “11 passengers of Janata Express and one from Kamayani Express were found dead. About rest, we are not sure whether they were local villagers or some other persons.”

Though the state government said that 21 coaches of the two trains derailed, the DRM said seven bogies of the Janata Express plus engine and 10 of Kamayani Express derailed.

According to Central Railway PRO Piyush Mathur, seven coaches of Kamayani Express and three bogies plus engine of the Rajendra Nagar(Patna)-Mumbai Janata Express had derailed.

Commissioner Railway Safety (central zone) will conduct an inquiry into the accidents, Railway Spokesperson Anil Saxena said.

The official said just eight minutes before the accident, two trains had crossed that section and their drivers did not detect any problem.

Indian Railways orders inquiry into twin train mishaps

Railways today ordered an inquiry into the twin train derailments in Harda in Madhya Pradesh which have left 29 passengers dead and ordered compensation for the families of the victims.

Commissioner Railway Safety (central zone) will conduct an inquiry into the accidents, Railway Spokesperson Anil Saxena said.

He said though prime facie flash floods caused the derailment of these two trains, the real cause will be ascertained after the submission of the inquiry report.

The official said just eight minutes before the accident, two trains had crossed that section and drivers of these trains did not detect any problem.

Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu expressed grief over the death of passengers in the twin train accidents and extended his deep condolences to the bereaved families.

Railways have also announced ex-gratia of Rs two lakh for the next of the kin of passengers who died in the mishaps, Rs 50,000 for those grievously injured and Rs 25,000 for passengers with minor injuries.

At least 24 passengers, including 10 women and five children, were killed and 25 others injured when 12 coaches of two trains from Mumbai derailed in Harda in Madhya Pradesh and plunged into a swollen Machak river.

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