Haathras/Lucknow: Eleven bogies of a Delhi-
bound train were torched at Haathras junction by angry locals,
protesting closing down of a nearby railway station, but all
the passengers were safe.
The protesters also indulged in heavy brick-batting near
the junction, some 350-km from Uttar Pradesh capital Lucknow,
leaving 25 policemen injured.
Eleven coaches of the Mahananda Express, travelling from
Kanpur to Delhi, were set ablaze and the station building was
damaged by the agitators, a North-Central Railway spokesperson
SP (Haathras) S R S Aditya said all the passengers were
safe as they had disembarked from the bogies before these were
set on fire.
He said the demonstrators, protesting winding up of a
station near Haathras, hurled bricks at police who fired in
the air and swung batons to disperse them.
In Lucknow, IGP (Law and Order) A P Maheshwari said the
arrest of some demonstrators who tried to block rail traffic
early in the morning sparked violence.
Irked over police action, the protesters threw bricks at
police and went on a rampage damaging coaches and engine of
The IGP said the protesters stopped the express train by
damaging its hosepipe, adding at least 25 policemen, including
Circle Officer Ashok Kumar, were injured in the stone-pelting.
Rail traffic on the Howrah-Delhi route was disrupted
for several hours due to the violence.
The IGP said 24 people were arrested on charges of
arson and breach of peace and added adequate police and PAC
had been deployed in the trouble-torn area to maintain peace.
The NCR spokesman said overhead electrical equipment
were also damaged by the protesters, adding the loss to the
railway property amounted to Rs 10 crore.
The IGP said members of the Akhil Bharatiya Parashuram
Vahini tried to block rail traffic at the Haathras when police
intervened and arrested 20 of them.
The arrested included Vahini chief Maheshdrapal Dixit,
The situation was now under control, the IGP said adding
rail traffic on one line of the route had resumed.