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Gorakhdham train tragedy: Broken track might have caused mishap

Preliminary probe into the Gorakhdham train accident has indicated that the cause could be “fractured track”, a senior union minister said on Tuesday, even as the death toll mounted to 26 with more bodies extricated from the mangled bogies.

Union Minister Kalraj Mishra, who met the injured at a hospital told reporters that the death toll has touched 26 while there were 93 injured.

When asked whether there was any possibility of terrorist conspiracy behind the incident, Mishra said, “Prima facie it appeared that the incident took place yesterday due to fractured rails. This angle (terrorist conspiracy) will also be probed”, adding the Director of Railways would probe into the incident. “Eleven more bodies have been recovered by the rescue team since last night,” District Magistrate Bharat Lal said.

The accident occurred on Monday when Delhi-Gorakhpur Gorakdham Express derailed and rammed into a stationary freight train near a railway station. Six bogies of the train were damaged in the accident which occurred near Churaib Railway Station.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday announced ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh each to the kin of those killed from the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund and Rs 50,000 for those seriously injured in Monday’s train accident in Uttar Pradesh.

Also, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has announced an ex gratia of Rs 5 lakh to the kin of those killed and Rs 50,000 for the injured, DIG, Public grievances A Satish Ganesh told reporters in Lucknow.

Union minister of state for Railways Manoj Sinha who accompanied Mishra during the visit alleged that the local administration did not cooperate in relief and rescue operations after the mishap.

“The district administration did not cooperate in relief and rescue operation after the accident. Had they cooperated, the operation would have been better”, Sinha told reporters. Sinha also said that compensation for victims is Rs 2 lakh, while it has been raised from Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh for seriously injured, and Rs 20,000 for minor injuries.

The UP Home Department had said on Monday that 40 people are feared killed in the accident.

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