PM Narendra Modi reacts to Kanchanjunga Express train accident in West Bengal: 'Saddening' | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

PM Narendra Modi reacts to Kanchanjunga Express train accident in West Bengal: 'Saddening'

Jun 17, 2024 02:53 PM IST

At least 15 persons were reportedly killed and 60 others were injured after a goods train collided with Sealdah-bound Kanchanjunga Express in West Bengal.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered his condolences to "those who lost their loved ones", after at least 15 persons were reportedly killed and around 60 others were injured after a goods train collided with the Sealdah-bound Kanchanjunga Express near Rangapani station in West Bengal's Darjeeling district on Monday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi (HT File Photo)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi (HT File Photo)

Three rear compartments of the Kanchanjunga Express train derailed under the impact of the collision from behind by the locomotive of the goods train, railway officials said.

The railway accident in West Bengal is saddening. Condolences to those who lost their loved ones. I pray that the injured recover at the earliest. Spoke to officials and took stock of the situation. Rescue operations are underway to assist the affected. The Railways Minister Shri @AshwiniVaishnaw Ji is on the way to the site of the mishap as well," PM Narendra Modi posted on X.

ALSO READ| Kanchanjunga Express Accident LIVE

The Prime Minister's office said Modi has also announced that an ex gratia of 2 lakh from the Prime Minister's National Relief Fund would be given to the next of kin of each deceased in the railway mishap in West Bengal. The injured would be given 50,000.

Rescue operations are underway at the spot, about 30 km from North Bengal's New Jalpaiguri station, and the injured persons were being shifted to nearby hospitals.

Railway minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said in a post on X: “Unfortunate accident in NFR zone. Rescue operations going on at war footing. Railways, NDRF and SDRF are working in close coordination. Injured are being shifted to the hospital. Senior officials have reached site.”

The divisional railway manager (DRM) of North Frontier Railway's Katihar division said the 13174 Kanchanjunga Express was bound for Sealdah from Agartala and the accident took place around 9am.

In a post on X, chief minister Mamata Banerjee said, “Shocked to learn, just now, about a tragic train accident, in Phansidewa area of Darjeeling district. While details are awaited, Kanchenjunga Express has reportedly been hit by a goods train.

“DM, SP, doctors, ambulances and disaster teams have been rushed to the site for rescue, recovery, medical assistance. Action on war-footing initiated.”

A passenger from Agartala, who was in coach number S6 of the Kanchanjunga Express, told news agency PTI that he felt a sudden jerk and the compartment screeched to a halt. He also claimed that the relief and rescue operations were delayed.

"My wife, child and I somehow managed to come out of the mangled coach. We are currently stranded... The rescue operations also started quite late," the passenger told a television channel.

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