First Train Derailment in Kashmir, 30 Injured

Srinagar, Nov 23: In the first incident of a train derailment in Indian administered Kashmir, at least 30 passengers were injured, some of them critically, when three bogies of the train derailed near Sadoora railway station, some 55 kms south of Srinagar.

At least 70 persons were travelling in the train when it left Qazigund Station in south Kashmir one and a half hours later than the scheduled time. “We saw smoke apparently coming out of train’s engine when it was crossing Lewdoora station. We complained to the driver. However, he ignored our plea and kept moving on. When the train reached Sadoora railway station, the driver was unable to halt the train there. Some hundred feet ahead of the station, the three bogeys of the train derailed from the track, injuring many travellers,” a group of passengers, who were on board in the train, said.

They said had the driver paid heed to their complaint, the accident could have been averted.

Officials said at least 30 passengers were injured in the mishap. “They were rushed to Emergency Hospital, where from two of the critically injured were referred to Srinagar for specialized treatment,” they said.

Immediately after the mishap, a team of Railway officials rushed to the spot to investigate the cause of mishap.

Sources said preliminary investigations have found that there was some problem with the brakes of the train.

A top civil official of Kashmir, Dr Asgar Hassan Samoon has asked Chief Area Manager Northern Railway Upinder Singh to inquire into the matter and furnish a report.

The first train service was introduced in the region in October 2008 and today’s incident was first incident of train derailment in Kashmir.

Fayaz Wani reports on life in Srinagar, Kashmir.