Kanchanjunga Express train accident: 26-km diversion for 22 passenger trains

Train services resumed on Monday, June 17 night on the Rangapani-Chattarhat section in West Bengal where the accident happened, killing nine people

Updated - June 19, 2024 07:39 pm IST

Published - June 18, 2024 09:23 am IST - Maligaon (Assam):

Rescue operation underway at the Kanchenjunga Express train accident site, in Darjeeling on June 17, 2024.

Rescue operation underway at the Kanchenjunga Express train accident site, in Darjeeling on June 17, 2024. | Photo Credit: ANI

The Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR), headquartered in Guwahati’s Maligaon, has diverted 22 passenger trains from the stretch where a goods train hit the Sealdah-bound Kanchanjungha Express, killing nine people

Also read: Kanchanjunga Express accident: goods train driver violated speed restriction norms, says Railway Board

The accident on June 17 happened in the Rangapani-Chattarhat section of NFR’s Katihar Division.

NFR spokesperson Sabyasachi De said the diversion of these trains, including the New Delhi-Dibrugarh Rajdhani Express and the Silchar-Sealdah Kanchanjungha Express, would entail covering 26 km more than the normal route via Rangapani and Chattarhat in West Bengal’s Darjeeling district.

“The Up line (Guwahati-bound) line at the accident site was restored at 5.40 p.m. on June 17 and the Down line (Sealdah/Delhi-bound) was restored at 7.30 a.m. today (June 18). The Avadh Assam Express was the first train to pass the accident site on the Down line at 10.

Also read | Kanchenjunga Express train accident: Death toll rises to 10

However, a majority of the trains have been diverted via the Aluabari-Siliguri-New Jalpaiguri route to reduce pressure on the affected stretch and clear the backlog of trains running late or stranded by the mishap.

“Although the stretch has been restored, trains need to cross it at a limited speed. The diversion of most trains is to ensure their running schedule is not affected much,” a railway official said.

The ballasts under the tracks normally take 24 hours to stabilise after which trains can run at their normal speed, the official explained.

Apart from the diversion, the NFR cancelled six trains – two Shatabdis and six of the intercity kind – and rescheduled the New Jalpaiguri-New Delhi Superfast Express.

Kanchanjungha Express arrives in Sealdah

Passengers of Sealdah Kanchanjunga Express that met with accident in north Bengal on June 17, 2024, arrive at Sealdah station on June 18, 2024 morning.

Passengers of Sealdah Kanchanjunga Express that met with accident in north Bengal on June 17, 2024, arrive at Sealdah station on June 18, 2024 morning. | Photo Credit: Debasish Bhaduri

Meanwhile, Kanchanjungha Express, arrived at its destination station, Sealdah in Kolkata, in the early hours today after the completion of restoration work.

“The 13174 Kanchanjunga Express from Tripura capital Agartala, scheduled to reach Sealdah at 7.20 pm on Monday, arrived at its destination eight hours behind schedule at 3.16 am,” the ER official said.

Ashwini Vaishnaw visits the injured in hospital

The hapless passengers, who went through the ordeal and horror of the accident, were provided with medical facilities, food and water at various stations, including Malda town and also at Sealdah during the journey, he said.

The State’s transport department provided buses and small vehicles to the passengers at Sealdah station to ensure that they reach their homes smoothly, a state government official said.

Kolkata Mayor criticises Centre

Kolkata Mayor Firhad Hakim interacted with the passengers who came by the train. The Mayor criticised the central government for "not doing anything" over the accident

"This is bad that the Central government is not doing anything. They (the BJP-led Central government) are playing with the lives of the people, they wait for any incident to take place. Why are they not paying attention to this issue, why do they wait for the people to die? This is all because they (the BJP government) want to privatise the Railway," he added.

Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also earlier hit out at the central government over its alleged negligence towards Railways.Kanchanjungha Express runs between Silchar in Assam to Sealdah in Kolkata.

(With inputs from ANI, PTI)

0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in

Comments

Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.