At least 60 people were reported killed and over 42 others were injured when Patna-bound 19321 Indore -Rajendranagar express train derailed near Pukhraya station in Kanpur Dehat district in UP on Sunday morning. But eyewitnesses reported that the death toll could be over 100.
Inspector General of Police (Kanpur zone) Zaki Ahmed said that 14 coaches derailed and four coaches were tangled with each other. The toll is likely to increase and many people are still trapped inside the bogies. Two AC coaches have telescoped over each other and a rescue team is trying to reach the other,” he said. He said the injured have been rushed to different hospitals in Kanpur city. The condition of over two dozen people is serious, he added.
Northern Central Railways spokesperson Vijay Kumar said that doctors and senior railway officials reached the spot soon after the accident and rescue operations were underway. The cause of the accident was not known immediately.
Kumar said that most of the casualties were reported from the S2 coach which is severely damaged. Buses have been called in to help passengers complete their journey, he said. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he had spoken to Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu who was monitoring the situation closely.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav tweeted that he had asked neighboring district officials to pool in resources for quicker relief operations. The derailment occurred at around 0310 hrs when the train was going towards Patna station. Due to the accident, several trains on the route have been diverted through alternate routes.
Eyewitnesses, mostly those who were traveling on the ill-fated train, said that the train was at an average speed when suddenly they heard a big sound and the coaches derailed while all the passengers were asleep.
” I woke up with a big sound of a crash. It was like a screeching sound and then everything was silent. I heard people shouting help… help”, Onkar Singh, a villager, said.
it was dark. I reached there with my father and saw a series of coaches lying on the track. People were crying. Some were shouting help, help. Suddenly I saw a man drenched in blood climbing down a bogie and collapsed, Singh said.
Satish Kumar, a passenger of the ill-fated train, said that around 3 am the train stopped; it started again and then we heard a crash. When we came out, we saw few coaches derailed.
Rajesh Modak of Railway Protection Force said 34 were dead and over 100 injured. The toll is likely to go up as two AC bogies are severely damaged and people are still trapped inside, he said. Both the tracks have been damaged, so it’s not possible to bring a rescue train. 58 ambulances are taking injured to hospitals in Kanpur, Modak added.