Puri-Haridwar Kalinga Utkal Express derails; at least 23 dead
Muzaffarnagar: As many as 14 coaches of the total 23 coaches of Puri-Haridwar Kalinga Utkal Express derailed near Khatauli in Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh at around 5:50 pm this evening killing at least 23 passengers and seriously injuring more than 40 others.
The train had left Puri on August 17 and was scheduled to reach Haridwar at 9 pm today. Total 86 passengers had boarded reserved coaches of the train from Puri.
Four teams of NDRF personnel have reportedly been dispatched to the spot.
The East Coast Railway (EcoR) has issued the following helpline Numbers: 1072, 0674-2490670, 0674-2534027. Other helplines are: Muzaffarnagar: 0131-2645238, Cuttack: 0671-2200568, Jajpur-Keonjhar Road: 06726-220599.
Meanwhile, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu tweeted, “I am personally monitoring the situation. I have instructed senior officers to reach the site immediately and ensure speedy rescue and relief operations.”
“Medical vans have been rushed to the site and all efforts are being taken to ensure speedy relief and rescue operations. I have instructed Railway Board Chairman and Member Traffic to oversee the rescue and relief operations. I am personally monitoring situation,” Prabhu posted on his twitter handle.
Later Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted, “Distressing news of Khatauli train accident. Hope everyone at the site puts in best efforts so that lives can be saved.”
Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said in a twitter post, “Deeply pained by the news of derailment of the Utkal Express at Khatauli near Muzaffarnagar. My prayers are with the families of those affected.”
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen expressed concern over the mishap and directed the Commerce and Transport Department to work in coordination with the Railways. Apart from this, Naveen talked to the Union Railway Minster regarding the mishap.
Moreover, the Chief Minister’s office announced Rs 5 lakh ex-gratia each for the kin of deceased from Odisha and Rs 50,000 for the injured.