• Live
    • Audio Only
  • google plus
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • People and policemen surround the bodies of victims lying on a railway track after an accident in Amritsar, India, October 19, 2018.

    People and policemen surround the bodies of victims lying on a railway track after an accident in Amritsar, India, October 19, 2018. | Photo: Reuters

Published 19 October 2018

Hundreds of people gathered to celebrate the Dussehra festival and to watch the burning of an effigy when a commuter train ran through the crowd around 7 p.m. local time.

A high-speed train ran through a crowd of people in northern India killing at least 59 people on Friday. According to officials, it is the country's worst rail disaster of the year. Another 40 people were wounded by the train.

RELATED:
India: At Least 48 Reported Dead After Bus Plunges 200 Meters

Hundreds of people gathered to celebrate the Dussehra festival and to watch the burning of an effigy when a commuter train ran through the crowd around 7 p.m. local time.

“We have 59 confirmed dead. The toll will rise,” State police chief Suresh Arora told Reuters. Officials are still trying to ascertain the extent of the disaster in Amritsar in the state of Punjab. Amid the festivities' confusion and fireworks, the victims didn't notice the train approaching. 

"Extremely saddened by the train accident in Amritsar. The tragedy is heart-wrenching. My deepest condolences to the families of those who lost their loved ones and I pray that the injured recover quickly. I have asked officials to provide immediate assistance that is required," wrote India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Twitter.

Local media video footage showed the effigy of the demon Ravana had just been lit and firecrackers were going off when the train plowed into the crowd, who were craning their necks and applauding the show. 

Amarinder Singh, Punjab chief minister, said he was rushing to Amritsar to supervise relief and rescue operations. “We have also ordered an inquiry as to why this incident has taken place,” Singh said, adding that he did not know why the Dussehra celebrations were being held so close to the railway tracks.

Comment
0
Comments
Post with no comments.