Chennai, May 1 UNI | 3 months ago

Floors stained with blood, both inside and outside the two ill-fated coaches, strewn chappals, damaged seats, reflected the gory picture of the twin blasts that rocked the Bangalore-Guwuhati Superfast Express after it arrived at Platform Numbr 9 in the Chennai Central Railway station, this morning.

Twentyfour-year-old Swati employed with TCS in Bangalore and proceeding to Vijaywada, enroute to Guntur, yearning to meet her parents for the first time in four months after landing the job, was the lone casualty in the first ever blasts that took place in a train, shocking the people of this bustling and teeming metropolis.

Fourteen others who sustained injuries were rescued and admitted to hospital.

As passengers and public ran helter-skelter, it was the porters, who jumped into the rescue work, lending a helping hand, even before the doctors could arrive at the spot.

Helping the passengers to alight from the S4 and S5 coaches, in which the low intensity blasts occurred, and shifting them to a safer place, the porters rose in unison in the rescue operations, reminding the famous adage that 'Unity is strength'.

People were moved to tears when they saw porters carrying the injured in their bare hands, unmindful of the oozing blood from the bodies of the victims, and helped the Railway and Police authorities in shifting them to the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital, located right opposite to the Central station.

Even before Railway doctors and paramedics could arrive at the spot, Porters from various platforms rushed to the spot and rescued the passengers.

"I was at Platform number 5, when I heard a blast on my left side. I immediately alerted other coolies and rushed to the spot," K Rathinam, a porter said.

"There was total chaos when the bombs went off. There was blood everywhere. People were running for their lives," Rathinam, who also helped the Railway authorities in getting stretchers, said.

S Moorthy, another porter said, there was not much damage to the rail coach and only the seat was damaged.

"Inside the compartments, the baggages of the passengers were found strewn around. Blood stains were seen outside the S4 and S5 coaches and the area looked like a battle zone, with passengers lying on the floor with their lower and upper limbs bleeding," he recounted, giving an eye witness account of the blasts.

Soon after the rescue operations, senior police officials
and railway authorities cordoned off the entire platform, while forensic experts, along with bomb detection and disposal squad personnel, with the assistance of sniffer dogs, took up preliminary investigations at the blast site.

(Posted on 01-05-2014)