In one of the worst rail disasters the country has ever witnessed, at least 142 people were killed and over 200 injured after 14 coaches of Patna-Indore Express derailed near Pukharayan in Kanpur
on Sunday morning at 3 am when most were sleeping.
As per the Indian Railways officials, 14 coaches which derailed are Seating cum Luggage Rake,GS,GS,A1,B1/2/3,BE,S1/2/3/4/5/6R.
Rescue and relief operations are still underway post the disaster. All hospitals in neighbouring districts have also been activated to aid the relief work. If reports are to be believed, one of the derailed coaches is still to be accessed by the rescue team.
Panic set in when the coaches derailed in darkness, throwing scores of sleeping passengers over one another. Many took a while to realise that a tragedy had hit the train.
Passengers who survived related that there was screaming and shouting as many of the injured were in agony.
A passenger who survived told journalists that the train stopped a couple of moments after 3 am for unexplained reasons.
“It then suddenly picked up speed,” the man said. “And then I got an eerie feeling that the train was rolling down a valley,” he said.
“By the time I learnt what had happened, some 20-25 people in my coach had been killed. A six-year-old girl was literally cut into two pieces,” said the terrified man.
Swayambi Mishra, in her early 20s, said she was in S1 and she did not know what had happened to her father.
A passenger in his 60s added: “God saved me. But most of the people who were with me in the coach seem to have disappeared. I can’t find them.”
It was the worst train accident in the country after the May 2010 disaster in West Bengal involving Gyaneshwari Express that killed some 170 people.
An enquiry has been ordered to determine the cause of the accident. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, and Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu have expressed their condolences to the bereaved families of the victims.
Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has announced an ex-gratia amount of Rs 3.5 lakhs for deceased families; Rs 50,000 for critically injured and compensation of Rs 25,000 for those who sustained minor injuries.
Expressing his condolence, Prime Minister Narendra Modi
said, “Anguished beyond words on loss of lives due to the derailing of Patna-Indore express. My thoughts are with the bereaved families.”
“Have spoken to Railway Minister. Suresh Prabhu
, who is personally monitoring the situation closely,” PM Modi.