Saturday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi departed for Odisha to investigate the three-train catastrophe in the Balasore district. Friday night’s gruesome train accident claimed the deaths of nearly 300 people and injured over 900 others.
According to the specifics, the prime minister will first visit the site of the railway accident before proceeding to a hospital in Cuttack where several of the injured have been admitted.
Earlier today, the prime minister also convened a meeting to discuss the Odisha train catastrophe, according to government sources.
The railways announced today that rescue operations at the disaster site have concluded.
According to available records, the fourth-deadliest train accident in India occurred near the Bahanaga Baazar station in Balasore district, about 250 kilometers south of Kolkata and 170 kilometers north of Bhubaneswar, at approximately 7 p.m. on Friday, prompting the Railway Ministry to order an investigation.
The investigation into the train disaster will be headed by AM Chowdhary, Commissioner of Railway Safety for the South East Circle, according to a statement from the Indian Railways. The Commissioner of Railway Safety is subordinate to the Department of Civil Aviation.
Several carriages of the 12864 Bengaluru-Howrah Superfast Express derailed and tumbled onto adjacent tracks, according to an official.
The effects of the ODISHA train crash
Some of the derailed carriages of the Chennai-bound Coromandel Express collided with the wagons of a nearby freight train.
The corpses were extracted from under the derailed carriages using gas cutters. Additionally, emergency management personnel and firefighters were called in to extricate carcasses.
At that location, the railway tracks were nearly destroyed as mangled carriages were strewn about, some of which were atop one another and a few of which had turned turtle due to the impact.
When the tragedy occurred, Pijush Poddar, a resident of Berhampore in the district of Murshidabad in West Bengal, was traveling to Tamil Nadu on the Coromandel Express to begin employment there.
“We felt an impact and witnessed the train bogie abruptly shift to one side. The momentum of the derailment caused many of us to be flung from the compartment. When we were able to climb out, we discovered bodies strewn about,” he told PTI.
Locals reported hearing a series of deafening noises, after which they raced to the scene and discovered derailed carriages that were reduced to “a twisted heap of steel.”
“The locals went above and beyond to assist us… One of the passengers, Rupam Banerjee, told reporters, “They not only assisted in rescuing people, but they also retrieved our luggage and brought us water.”
Passengers reported that one of the carriages “was pushed into the ground” as another from a neighboring train collapsed on top of it.
The Balasore district hospital resembled a combat zone, with wounded patients lying on stretchers in the corridor and rooms overflowing with additional beds.