Other States

Seemanchal Express derailment: Politicians trade charges over mishap

Rescue workers look for survivors in the derailed coaches of the Seemanchal Express near Patna on February 3, 2019.

Rescue workers look for survivors in the derailed coaches of the Seemanchal Express near Patna on February 3, 2019.   | Photo Credit: AP

Govt. priorities misplaced, say Opposition leaders; Paswan blames Lalu’s policies.

Opposition leaders in Bihar on Sunday squarely blamed the Narendra Modi government at the Centre for the derailment in Vaishali district of the Delhi-bound Seemanchal Express earlier in the day which left six persons dead.

However, former Union Railway Minister and chief of NDA ally, Lok Jansakthi Party, Ram Vilas Paswan hit back claiming that rail tracks across the country were under tremendous pressure because of “reckless increase in number of bogies” that took place during the tenure of RJD supremo Lalu Prasad at the helm of the ministry.

A mismatch

“This government has misplaced priorities. It is trying to introduce bullet trains, running at very high speeds with the help of sophisticated technology. On the other hand, there is a crying need for proper upkeep of ordinary trains like the Seemanchal Express,” Loktantrik Janta Dal leader and former Union minister Sharad Yadav said.

Former Bihar chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi also held the Modi government responsible for the mishap and demanded a compensation of “₹20 lakh to each injured passenger.”

Bihar Congress working president Kaukab Qadri issued a statement seeking the resignation of Railway Minister Piyush Goyal.

Later at a rally organized by the Congress in Patna, opposition leaders led by Rahul Gandhi and RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, besides the Chief Ministers of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh Ashok Gehlot, Kamal Nath and Bhupesh Baghel respectively, observed a one-minute silence to mourn the tragedy.

However, talking to reporters at Sahdei Bujurg, the site of the mishap that falls in his Lok Sabha constituency of Hajipur, Mr. Paswan said “Lalu Prasad’s tenure as Railway Minister was marked by increase in the number of bogies for trains without track augmentation.”

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Printable version | Apr 6, 2020 11:33:55 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/seemanchal-express-derailment-politicians-trade-charges-over-mishap/article26169332.ece

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