Penugonda: On Monday, a truck carrying the 17-tonne granite block rammed into the H1 air-conditioned coach of the Bangalore City-Nanded Express resulting in the death of five persons including an MLA from Karnataka.
A lot of questions are arising out of this incident all across. Was the driver of the granite laden truck intentionally hit the speeding Bangalore City-Nanded express train at the Level crossing gate near Penugonda on the fateful night? Answer seems to be yes for sure, as it is reliably learnt from the labourers working in the quarry where from the 10-wheeled granite laden heavy truck started off its journey, opined that the driver of the truck used to regularly glorify terror attacks the world over. He used to also view different videos of terror attacks on his mobile regularly, and on that fateful day of accident, evidences are coming out that the driver showed the World Trade Centre terror attack at New York video to few of his fellow labourers. He also had a quarrel with some labourers on that fateful day, and heated conversations went on.. says the labourers working at the quarry. It is also reliably learnt that the driver manhandled the cleaner on that fateful night near a tea stall. Bystanders who witnessed the quarrel some 1 km away from the the accident said that while having cigarette near a tea stall minutes before the accident occurred, driver hurled abuses on the cleaner and hit him. All these facts prove that the driver might have rammed the vehicle intentionally, and cleverly jumped off the truck few seconds before the lorry hit the approaching super fast train.
Investigating agencies have to bring out the real facts out in this harrowing incident and must find out whether the driver had intentionally rammed the granite laden heavy truck on to the approaching train so as to cause massive accident and loss of lives. Fortunately the truck hit the AC Compartment. Had it crashed onto the Sleeper Class coach or General compartment, then the casualties could have been too high, opined the Railway officials.
This accident between Rangepalli and Penukonda stations resulted in derailment of four coaches and death of five people including Deodurg MLA A Venkatesh Naik.
The Commissioner of Railway Safety, Southern Circle, Bengaluru, Satish Kumar Mittal, will hold a statutory enquiry into the Monday’s accident involving Bangalore City-Nanded Express train. The inquiry will be held on Thursday at 10 am at the office of the Divisional Railway Manager, Bengaluru.
Any member of the public having knowledge relating to the incident and desiring to give evidence may do so at the enquiry or may write to the Commissioner of Railway Safety, No.7, Seshadri Road, Gandhinagar, Bengaluru-560009 or fax to 080-22260650.
Contractor offers special puja to ‘killer’ granite stone before removing from the accident site
The killer granite block that ripped through a railway compartment near Penukonda in the district on Monday, received some unexpected attention in the form of a special prayer by a group of contract labour engaged to shift the stone, lying near the railway track.
On Wednesday, railway contractor Venkateswarulu performed a special ‘shanti puja’ before shifting the granite block. The pooja, he said, was performed because the block of granite happened to hit an air-conditioned coach which carries fewer passengers than a regular coach. “It was really shocking as five people lost their lives in the accident. Had the granite block rammed the general coaches, the casualties would have been much more. By hitting an air-conditioned coach, it indirectly helped save more lives,” he said.
The contractor brought with him a priest to perform ‘Jalabhishekam and ‘Kunkuma Archana’. The nearly hour-and-half puja was attended by a few workers and railways staff for which the contractor reportedly bore the expenses.
Only after performing puja, the stone was lifted from the spot where it fell after slicing through the H1 coach of Nanded Express. The truck carrying the large stone is believed to have been out of control on the incline leading to the level crossing and after hitting the gate there, it careened to a side and the stone block then hit the railway compartment sideways, resulting in the deaths of four people in the coach and one in the truck.
One of the labourers at the spot who took part in the stone removal work, K Satyanarayana, said that it was indeed fortunate that the granite block did not kill more people. When contacted about the special puja, local police officials said that they were superstitions that the labourers believed in. However, they denied any knowledge of the incident.
In the end, the granite block was moved a little distance away from the track where it currently lies. Meanwhile, the railway police arrested the truck owner Venkatasubbaiah as they speeded up investigations into the accident.