2 Killed, Over 50 Injured As Train Derails After Maoists Blast Tracks

Two passengers were killed and over 50 others injured when eight bogies of the Tata-Bilaspur passenger train derailed after Maoists blew up railway tracks on Thursday night in Jharkhand's West Singhbhum district. Railway minister Mamata Banerjee
2 killed over 50 injured as train derails after...
PTI November 20, 2009 14:02 IST

Two passengers were killed and over 50 others injured when eight bogies of the Tata-Bilaspur passenger train derailed after Maoists blew up railway tracks on Thursday night in Jharkhand's West Singhbhum district.

Railway minister Mamata Banerjee told PTI from Delhi that the train comprised 10 coaches of which five derailed and three toppled over as also the engine.

She said two bodies were found in a overturned bogie, while 50 passengers were injured. Six passengers were trapped in another capsized bogie.

Three passengers have been rescued so far as rescuers were using gas cutters to gain entry to the coaches, three of which were badly damaged, Banerjee said.

The blast occurred between Manohar and Posoita railway stations just in front of the engine of the train, some 20 minutes after a pilot engine had passed.

Banerjee said, "Maoists blew up a portion of a railway track which caused the derailment. There were also three to four blasts nearby to deter rescuers."

Superintendent of Police (Rail) A B Homker told PTI in Ranchi, "Railway staff and rescue teams have reached the spot, and are cutting open the bogies to rescue the injured passengers." 

PTI adds from Rourkela: A relief train carrying 55 injured passengers of the Tata-Bilaspur train that derailed due to a blast triggered by Maoists in Jharkhand's West Singbhum arrived in the steel town of Rourkela in Orissa in the wee hours of Friday.

Two passengers were killed in the mishap.  Area manager, Bondamunda Railway Yard, H K Padhee, who escorted the injured passengers, said that of the 55 injured, 32 were discharged after first aid, while the rest were admitted to the Ispat General Hospital and Government Hospital here. 

He said two engines of the train had derailed, two bogies  completely toppled over, while three had tilted.

The blast was so powerful that it ripped up the tracks on the up line, while the electrical circuit in the down line was damaged. "The down line was being restored, but it would take some time to restore the up track," Padhee said.

The injured passengers said they heard a very loud explosion.  Bholanath Sagar of Birmaharajpur in Orissa's Sonepur district said he heard a loud bang and saw two bogies being hurled off the track.  Local people came quickly to the rescue while the railway and administration took two hours to reach the spot, he said.

Another passenger Parameshwar Pradhan was too stunned to speak and was crying as he alighted on the platform.

Niyoti Pramanick, with her head bandaged said she was unable to see properly after the explosion, but had managed to crawl out of her compartment.

Another passenger Madan Charan Bihari, who received injuries in the face and chest, said he was in one of the bogies that toppled over completely. He was pulled to safety from a window of the coach he was travelling in. 

A small businessman from Rourkela, Subodh Kumar Sahu waited nervously on the platform as his fiancee was on board the ill-fated train.  He was relieved after seeing her coming out unharmed. "I am thankful to god that nothing happened to her."  CRPF personnel had helped in the rescue operations. PTI

 
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