At least 15 people were killed and seven others seriously injured in two separate train accidents at unmanned level crossings in Uttar Pradesh on Tuesday morning.
Fifteen people died and three were injured when the Mathura-Kasganj Express rammed into an overcrowded Tata Magic van at an unmanned railway crossing near Mendu railway station in Hathras (Mahamaya Nagar) district. The van carrying 22 people and a dead body collided with the train at 7:19 am when the driver tried to cross the track even as the train was approaching. The train was going to Kasganj.
After a rescue operation of nearly 40 minutes, rail traffic was restored along the route. Railway minister Mukul Roy announced an ex gratia relief of R2 lakh each to the families of those killed in the mishap Rs 50,000 to the grievously injured and Rs 25,000 to those who sustained simple injuries.
“The incident occurred due to negligent driving by the mini-van driver. He did not stop the van to check for the approaching train as prescribed," Roy said in a suo motu statement in the Lok Sabha.
Expressing shock over the accident, UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav also announced a relief of Rs 1 lakh each to the families of deceased, Rs 50,000 to those with serious injuries and Rs 25,000 each with minor injuries.
“The incident took place between Hathras city and Mendu railway stations under the Izzat Nagar division of North Eastern Railway. The three injured have been admitted to Aligarh district hospital,” said Amit Singh, chief public relations officer, North Eastern Rawilays.
Earlier, four persons were injured in another accident when a loaded truck was hit by the Aishbagh-Pilibhit express at an unmanned railway crossing in Bakshi Ka Talab area of Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh. The accident took place at 4:35 am on the Itaunja-Bakshi Ka Talab railway line. The truck driver, his assistant and two labourers injured in the accident have been admitted to the CSM Medical University in Lucknow.