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Trains catch fire at Old Delhi station, foul play suspected

In a bizarre incident, three coaches of two different trains standing 100 metres away from each other caught fire in an interval of 30 minutes in the Old Delhi railway station yard on Tuesday morning.
By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON MAY 02, 2012 12:14 AM IST

In a bizarre incident, three coaches of two different trains standing 100 metres away from each other caught fire in an interval of 30 minutes in the Old Delhi railway station yard on Tuesday morning.


The first fire broke out around 10.45 am in the luggage van of the Faizabad Express. Around 30 minutes later, another fire was reported in a sleeper coach of the Satyagrah Express.

Since the trains were parked at the yard, no casualty was reported. Both police and the railway authorities suspect to be a case of sabotage.

"Two incidents of fire were reported within an hour. Initially, it appears to be a case of mischief and we have formed a four-member committee to investigate the matter. It will submit the final report by Wednesday evening," Ashwani Lohani, DRM, Delhi division, northern railways.

In 2008 too, two separate cases of fire were reported in two parked trains.

"After receiving the first call, the railway staff rushed to spot with fire extinguishers and doused the blaze within 15 minutes. After the rescue staff came back, another call was received about a fire in a sleeper coach of Satyagrah Express," a senior railway officer said.

To minimise the damage, the rescue staff separated the rest of the coaches of the train.

Railway officials and police have not ruled out foul play. A case of mischief causing damage to railway property has been registered.

"It cannot be a coincidence that two trains standing close to each other catch fire within an half an hour. Forensic teams were called and they have picked up samples from the spot. Their report will reveal crucial details," BS Gurjar, DCP (railways) said.

The police were scanning CCTV footages of cameras installed at nearby locations and the employees were also being questioned.

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