Victims to be blamed for the tragedy: DRM/Samastipur

Dhamara Ghat (Khagaria): Union Minister of State (MOS) for Railways Adhir Ranjan Chowdhary visited Dhamara Ghat railway station late on Monday night where, in all, 28 passengers were run over and killed by 12567 Rajyarani Express while crossing the rail track earlier in the day.

The railway minister also visited the persons who were seriously injured in the incident at Sadar hospital, Khagaria. He personally handed over a cheque of Rs 95,000 and a cash of Rs 5,000 to each of the three admitted in the hospital. The railways has announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh to the next of the kin of those who were killed by the train at the station, according to Samastipur Divisional Railway Manager Arun Malik.

A four-member junior administrative grade inquiry has, in the meantime, been ordered into the ghastly accident at Dhamara Ghat railway station in Saharsa-Mansi section of Samastipur Railway Division of East Central Railway (ECR) on Monday morning, the DRM said.

DRM Malik, shrugging off railways’ culpability in the accident said, “The passengers had got off the Saharsa-Samastipur passenger train on the wrong side of the platform and were walking through the middle track at the station when Patna-bound super fast Rajyarani Express happened to pass through.”

Putting the blame squarely on the hordes of passengers, he said, “The train had not only been given signal, and the train driver also blew the horn, but in the din of the passengers, who were hurrying towards Katyani temple,opposite to the railway platform, missed the engine’s hoot.”

“The question of suspension of any railway staff does not arise,” he said. He also added that the engine driver of Rajyarani Express Rajaram Paswan had to face the mob fury and was seriously injured.

Meanwhile, train services in Saharsa-Mansi section in Samastipur division were resumed late on Monday night. 15208 Amritsar-Saharsa Jansewa Express, Danapur-Saharsa Inter-City Express, Sealdah- Saharsa Haatey Bazare crossed on Tuesday.

However, Saharsa-Patna Rajyarani Express and Patna-Saharsa Kosi Express are suspended even on Tuesday.

In all, 15 out of 19 coaches of Rajyarani Express and 5 out of 11 coaches of Saharsa-Samastipur Passengers and engines of both the trains were torched by irate mob which had converged at the station. The burnt coaches and engines have, in the meantime, been towed away, railway sources said.