Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu’s efforts to modernise and improve India’s railway system faced yet another embarrassment when on Thursday six bogies of the Jabalpur-Nizamuddin Mahakaushal Express derailed in neighbouring Mahoba leaving 36 passengers injured. Uttar Pradesh Health Minister Siddharth Nath Singh said derailment will be probed, adding that necessary compensation will be announced. Unfortunately, however, for Prabhu and his ministry, this is the latest in a series of train accidents that have occurred all over India in 2016-17. Here is a look at all the train derailment incidents in past few months:
January 22, 2017: At least 40 people were killed and over 65 injured after the 18448 Hirakhand Express went off the rails in Andhra Pradesh’s Vizianagaram district. All the dead and injured were travelling in the train, going from Jagdalpur in Chhattisgarh to Bhubaneswar. According to an Indian Express report, The Hirakhand Express had left Rayagada in Odisha at 11 pm and had just entered Andhra Pradesh when its driver apparently heard a sharp sound like a cracker going off. Almost immediately, nine of the train’s 22 coaches — an AC 2-tier coach, an AC 3-tier coach, four sleeper coaches, two general compartments, and the luggage van and guard’s cabin — apart from the locomotive itself, jumped the rails.
December 28, 2016: 63 people were injured when at least fourteen coaches of Sealdah-Ajmer Express went off the tracks in Kanpur at around 5.30 am. At least 22 passengers were reported to have suffered serious injuries. Fourteen coaches of the Sealdah-Ajmer Express went off the tracks at Rura in Kanpur Dehat district. Two coaches slipped off a bridge and fell into a canal, while at least two coaches hit the platform of Rura station.
December 6, 2016: Two coaches and the engine of Guwahati-bound Capital Express from Bihar derailed in North Bengal. At least two people died in the accident, while 10 were injured. The incident took place shortly after 9 pm near Shamuktala Road station.
November 20, 2016: In one of the most disastrous train tragedies in India in recent memory, at least 147 people died while over 180 were injured after 14 coaches of Patna-Indore Express derailed. The incident took place early morning in Kanpur Dehat district. According to the recent investigation, Moti Paswan, Dayashanker Patel and Mukesh Yadav, who were arrested by Bihar police confessed to their alleged involvement in the Kanpur train accident.
October 5, 2016: Nine coaches of Pune-bound Jammu Tawi-Pune Jhelum Express, carrying 165 passengers derailed. Three people were injured in the train derailment, but neither of them was a passenger in the train. Ten coaches which derailed included one pantry, a 3-Tier AC compartment (B-5) and eight Sleeper (SLR) class compartments (S1 to S8).
September 30, 2016: Two GRP employees died, while 27 other were people were injured when Bhubaneswar-Bhadrak passenger train and a goods train near Kathojodi station at Cuttack collided with each other. The officials said that two coaches of the train were derailed after the trains collided. The investigation revealed that the trains were running on the same track.
September 20, 2016: A disruption in rail traffic was caused between Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam sections by the derailment of goods train at Karunagappalli Station near Kollam. Because of the accident, few long-distance trains on way to Thiruvananthapuram and towards Ernakulam were detained at nearby stations.