32 killed, 50 injured as train derails in southern India

Miranda GreerJan 23, 2017

The express train from Jagdalpur to Bhubaneswar derailed near Kuneri station, in the state of Andhra Pradesh, around 30km outside the town of Raigarh.

"The rescue operation is nearly over", said J.P. Mishra, the chief public relations officer at East Coast Railway, which has jurisdiction over the area where the derailment occurred.

In the last serious accident, 150 people died when a train derailed late previous year in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.

At least 13 people were killed and about 100 others were injured after train derailed in India late on Saturady, Sputnik reported.

In March 2015 another accident in Uttar Pradesh killed 39 people and injured 150.

Rescue operations were under way and coaches that had not derailed had been towed from the scene.

Chief ministers of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh expressed their grief over the latest tragedy, while Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu said he was rushing to the spot.

Television footage showed a line of carriages lying on their sides as rescuers in neon orange safety vests and hard hats tried to hoist passengers through the windows while locals gathered to peer at the rescue effort.

"My thoughts are with those who lost their loved ones".

The Railway Ministry has announced compensation of 2,937 US dollars to the kins of each deceased in the accident and 734 dollars to the injured.

Last month two people were killed and dozens injured after another train derailed also near Kanpur.

India's train network is the primary form of long-distance travel in the country, but is poorly funded and is plagued with deadly accidents.

India's sprawling railways are the world's third largest network, ferrying around 23 million people each day.

Narendra Modi, the Indian Prime Minister, also responded, saying that he was "saddened" by the news.

The Prime Minister promised a year ago that $137 billion will be used for modernizing the railways.

Modi's government has signed numerous deals with private companies to upgrade the ageing network.

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