Amritsar train mishap: Event organiser denies responsibility
Amritsar (Punjab) , Oct 24 : Saurabh Madan Mithu, the organiser of the Dussehra event in Amritsar's Choura Bazar area, on Wednesday denied responsibility of the accident in which 59 people lost their lives after being crushed by a speeding train.
"I am not at all responsible for the accident as I organised the event within the permitted boundary. There was an 8-feet tall boundary wall between the event venue and railway land. People came and stood there. We even made the announcements and told them to move. Nobody realised that those two trains were moving in their direction," Mithu told ANI.
The organiser also clarified that he had sought permission from the police to organise the event and urged the authorities to deploy more security personnel as they were expecting a good footfall.
"Both local and railway police were present at the spot. The fire department was also present there and all arrangements pertaining to safety were made. We had informed the authorities that around 10 to 15 thousand people will be present at the event," he added.
When quizzed as to why he fled from the spot moments after the incident, Mithu said that he got scared after some of the people pelted stones at him and his family.
"Some 20-25 people started running towards me after people were killed by a speeding train. All my relatives were present at the event. I was afraid that the mob will also attack them which is why I ran from there," he said.
In his concluding remarks, Mithu said that people should be aware of the consequences before standing on tracks while reiterating that they repeatedly urged the people not to stand on the railway track.
The accident took place on October 19 in Choura Bazar near Jhoda Phatak area of Amritsar after a train ran over the crowd, standing along train tracks to watch an effigy of Ravan being burnt. At least 59 people died while 57 sustained injuries in the tragedy.