Beijing: China's state news agency Xinhua has denied widespread rumours that railway authorities tried to conceal evidence by burying carriages damaged during a high-speed rail crash that killed at least 40 people last weekend.
Citing an unnamed official with the Ministry of Railways, Xinhua said late on Friday that "the problem of burying rail carriages and 'destroying evidence' does not exist during the handling of the whole of the accident."
The report said that only the damaged parts of some carriages were buried at the site in order to facilitate clean-up and rescue operations.
In China's worst rail accident since 2008, a high-speed train rammed into the back of another in the eastern city of Wenzhou on July 23.
A Chinese railway research institute has already taken responsibility for the accident, which has been blamed on faulty signalling equipment.
The government is facing growing public discontent about the way it has handled rescue operations and its attempt to muzzle the press in the wake of the crash.
Newspapers have already begun questioning the official account and conspiracy theories have also dominated Chinese social media sites.
First Published: Saturday, July 30, 2011, 13:10