Seven victims of Andhra train accident identified

Hyderabad, Nov 3 : Seven of the eight Bokaro Express passengers who were run over by another train near Vizianagaram in Andhra Pradesh Saturday night have been identified, police said.

All the bodies were shifted to railway hospital at Visakhapatnam. "One body is yet to be identified," a police official said Sunday.

One of the two injured is in critical condition.

The dead have been identified as Alexis, 27, Shweta Singh, 33, Samhita, 10, Shaurya, 2, Tara Devi, 34, Kartik Sahu, 70, and Lokender Kumar, 28.

Police said Lokender Kumar was a soldier in the army. The dead include three members of a family.

The ghastly accident took place at Gotlam near Vizianagaram town, about 700 km from here, when some passengers of Alappuzha-Dhanbad Express pulled the chain and jumped down from the train following rumours that fire broke out on the train. They failed to notice another train coming in opposite direction on the adjacent track.

Railway officials said Alappuzha-Dhanbad train, also known as Bokaro Express was on its way from Alappuzha in Kerala to Dhanbad in Jharkhand via Bokaro Steel City.

They quoted eye-witnesses as saying that someone in S1 passenger car pulled the chain as rumours spread that an adjacent coach had caught fire. Passengers jumped down in panic but came under Rayagada-Vijayawada passenger train coming in the opposite direction on another track.

Since it was pitch dark, they failed to notice the speeding train.

The dead include three members of a family from Aurangabad in Bihar. Manoj Kumar lost his wife Shweta Singh and two children two-year-old Shaurya and 10-year-old Samhita Kumari. The family was returning to Aurangabad from Bangalore.

Railways have ordered a probe. Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge termed the incident as "most tragic" and instructed the officials to ensure the injured get speedy treatment.

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy, who was away in Bangalore, expressed shock. He spoke to Vizianagaram district collector and superintendent of police over phone and directed them to provide all help to the families of the victims.

--IANS (Posted on 03-11-2013)

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