NHRC notices to Punjab govt, Railway Board over Amritsar train tragedy

New Delhi: The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Monday issued notices to Punjab government and Chairman, Railway Board, over the Amritsar tragedy in which over 60 people were crushed to death by a train while watching the burning of the Dussehra effigy.

The Commission has sought a detailed report within four weeks.

The Commission observed that it cannot be said to be a “sane act by people” to sit on the railway tracks, at the same time, the negligence on the part of the district authorities is “apparent.”

“It seems that the local authorities and the organizers did not properly manage the crowd, gathered to watch Dussehra celebrations. It was the responsibility of the state to provide safety and protection to the citizens during the event,” the NHRC said in a statement.

“If it was true that the railway authorities were not informed about the event, it indicates highly negligent and reckless attitude of the authorities. This is a case of serious violation of human rights,” it added.

The NHRC also sought to know from the state government the details regarding disbursement of relief and rehabilitation to the aggrieved families as well as information on the status of the treatment being provided to the injured in different hospitals of Amritsar.

People watching the Dusshera proceedings from the railway tracks near Joda Phatak in Amritsar on October 19 were crushed by the speeding Jalandhar-Amritsar DMU (diesel multiple unit) train.

The railways has given a clean chit to the train driver and other officials saying that they (railways) were not informed about the Ravan effigy burning event so close to the railway tracks and the presence of hundreds of people on the tracks.

(Pic Credit: The Indian Express)

}