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At least 58 dead, 70 injured in Amritsar train tragedy, Punjab CM orders probe

At least 58 people have died and more than 70 injured after being mowed down by a fast-moving train in Punjab's Amritsar. 

At least 58 dead, 70 injured in Amritsar train tragedy, Punjab CM orders probe
Image Courtesy: IANS

At least 58 people have died and more than 70 injured after being mowed down by a fast-moving train in Punjab's Amritsar. 

The incident occurred on Friday when people went to witness the burning of Ravana effigy near Dhobi Ghat area of Amritsar. News agency ANI reported that a train ran into a burning effigy of Ravana.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday approved Rs 2 lakhs for the kin of those deceased and Rs 50,000 for those injured in Amritsar train accident.

Earlier, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh approved Rs 5 lakh for the family of deceased. Punjab CM has ordered an inquiry into the accident. 

State mourning has been declared in Punjab on Saturday. All educational institutions and offices will be closed.

Crowd of Dussehra revellers, who had spilled onto railway tracks while watching burning of a Ravana effigy, was run over by the train in Amritsar.

 

 

The train was coming from Jalandhar. The incident happened at Joda Phatak where at least 300 people were watching 'Ravana dahan' at a ground near the railway tracks.

Indo-Tibetan Border Police and Punjab police personnel were deployed at the site of the accident to help in rescue operations. 

 

 

Punjab CM has set up a Crisis Management Group to monitor the relief and rehabilitation efforts. The Group is led by Health Minister Brahm Mohindra with Revenue Minister Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria and Technical Education Minister Charanjit S Channi as members. The team has rushed to the accident site.

 

 

Minister of State, Railways, Manoj Sinha also responded to the accident and confirmed that medical teams are rushing to the spot.

The Chief Public Relation Officer (CPRO), Northern Railways responded to the accident at Amritsar by saying that the level crossing was shut when the train was passing.

Navjot Kaur Sidhu, wife of Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu was present at the event and people have alleged that she left as soon as the accident took place. 

However, Navjot Kaur denied the reports and urged people not to make it a political issue. She later said went to the hospital where injured were taken and said that she had left the event before the accident took place. "People who are doing politics over this incident should be ashamed," she said.

MP from Amritsar, Gurjeet Singh Aujla was present at Civil Hospital and said "probe will be conducted into the incident, action will be taken against those found guilty, even if it is Navjot Kaur Sidhu."

 

 

 

 

Railways released the helpline numbers: 0183-2223171, 0183-2564485.

(With Agency Inputs)