More than 50 people died and over 600 were injured on Friday following a three-way accident involving Bengaluru-Howrah superfast Express, the Coromandel Express and a goods train at Bahanagar in Odisha’s Balasore district. While Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said the government’s top priority is to save the lives of injured passengers, Prime Minister Narendra Modi took stock of the situation over the phone with Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw and assured all possible help.
Odisha Chief Secretary Pradeep Jena, in an interview with CNN-New18, expressed his deep regret over the “unfortunate accident.” “We have received reports suggesting that the death toll is approximately 50, while the number of injured individuals exceeds 300,” he said.
Here’s All You need to know about the Odisha triple train crash
- Three Trains Collide in Balasore: Several coaches of the 12864 Bengaluru-Howrah train derailed and fell onto adjacent tracks at Bahanaga Baazar in Balasore district. These derailed coaches collided with the 12841 Shalimar-Chennai Central Coromandel Express, causing its coaches to also capsise. Additionally, a goods train was involved in the accident as the derailed coaches of the Coromandel Express collided with its wagons. The incident occurred around 7 pm, according to officials.
- 50 Dead, Over 350 Injured: Officials have reported that more than 350 individuals have been admitted to various hospitals throughout the district. They further mentioned that all private and government hospitals in nearby districts, including the state capital Bhubaneswar, have been placed on high alert. As of now, 50 bodies have been recovered from under the overturned coaches, according to the officials.
- Odisha Hospitals on Alert Balasore, Bhadrak, Mayurbhanj, Jajpur, Kendrapara, Cuttack, and Bhubaneswar have been notified to inform all BIju Swatya Kalyan Yojana (BSKY) empanelled private hospitals to keep beds ready to receive patients from the accident site, officials said.
- ‘Saving Lives of Injured Passengers Govt’s Top Priority’ Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik expressed deep concern over the train accident near Balasore and stated that the government’s top priority is to save the lives of injured passengers. The Chief Minister visited the State Emergency Operation Centre (SRC Office) in the evening to assess the situation.
Tomorrow morning, the Chief Minister will visit the accident site personally to review the situation on the ground. Chief Secretary Shri PK Jena has briefed the Chief Minister about the current situation.
Earlier, Chief Minister Patnaik had assigned the Revenue Minister and a team of top officials to oversee and expedite the rescue operations. Notable officials present during the visit included Development Commissioner Anu Garg, Secretary to CM (5T) VK Pandian, Information & PR Secretary Sanjay Singh, and Transport Secretary Usha Padhi.
- Railway Minister Rushes to Accident Site: Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said he was rushing to the accident site. “Rushing to the site in Odisha. My prayers for the speedy recovery of the injured and condolences to the bereaved families. Rescue teams mobilised from Bhubaneswar and Kolkata. NDRF, State govt. teams and Airforce also mobilised. Will take all hands required for the rescue ops,” he said in a tweet.
The Union Minister also announced ex-gratia of Rs 10 lakh for the deceased, Rs 2 lakh for those grievously injured and Rs 50,000 for those who received minor injuries.
- PM Modi Assures All Possible Assistance Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was distressed by the accident, and spoke with Union Railway Minister Vaishnaw to take stock of the situation. “Distressed by the train accident in Odisha. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon. Spoke to Railway Minister @AshwiniVaishnaw and took stock of the situation. Rescue ops are underway at the site of the mishap and all possible assistance is being given to those affected,” he said in a tweet.
He also announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh from PMNRF for the next of kin of each deceased in the train mishap in Odisha. The injured would be given Rs 50,000, the PMO said.
- NDRF, Ambulances, Rapid Action Force Dispatched: Four units of the Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF), three units of NDRF and 60 ambulances were working to rescue the injured, according to official reports.
- Bengal Sends Team, CM Monitors Situation Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said she was monitoring the situation along with the chief secretary and other officials. “We are coordinating with Odisha government and South Eastern Railways for our people’s sake. Our emergency control room has been activated at once with numbers 033- 22143526/ 22535185. All out efforts for rescue, retrieval, aid and assistance initiated,” she tweeted. West Bengal Chief Secretary HK Dwivedi said the state was sending a team led by minister Manas Bhunia and MP Dola Sen to the spot.
- Tamil Nadu CM Stalin dials Naveen Patnaik: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin spoke to his Odisha counterpart following the accident of the Coromandel Express train, and announced that he was deputing a four-member panel to coordinate the rescue of Tamils on the train. The details shared by the latter about the accident are ‘worrying’ he said in a tweet.
The Chief Minister also conveyed his condolences for the lives lost in the incident. “I have asked Transport Minister S S Sivasankar and 3 IAS officials to rush to Odisha to rescue the Tamils involved in the accident. Have directed setting up a helpline,” he added.
Later, a state government release stated that Stalin offered Patnaik “medical assistance to the injured” and expressed willingness to depute medical teams and provide other aid to Odisha, if required.
- Helpline Numbers Issued: According to an official statement released by the South Central Railway, Additional General Manager, South Eastern Railway along with other Principal Head of the Departments already left for the site. The Railways have also opened helpline numbers at various stations:
The following Help Line Numbers have been opened at Stations:-
- Howrah: 033-26382217
- Kharagpur: 8972073925 & 9332392339
- Balasore: 8249591559 & 7978418322
- Shalimar: 9903370746
- Santragachi: 8109289460 & 8340649469
- Bhadrak: 7894099579 & 9337116373
- Jajpur Keonjhar Road: 9676974398
- Cuttack: 8455889917
- Bhubaneswar: 06742534027
- Khurda Road: 6370108046 and 06742492245
- Changes in Train Services
- Train Number 12838 Puri-Howrah Express from Puri on 02.06.2023.
- Train Number 18410 Puri-Shalimar Shri Jagannath Express from Puri on 02.06.2023.
- Train Number 08012 Puri-Bhanjapur Special from Puri on 02.06.2023.
Diversion of Trains:
- Train Number 03229 Puri-Patna Special from Puri on 02.06.2023 will run via Jakhapura-Jaroli route.
- Train Number 12840 Chennai-Howrah Mail from Chennai on 01.06.2023 will run via Jakhapura and Jaroli route.
- Train Number 18048 Vasco da Gama-Howrah Amaravati Express from Vasco on 01.06.2023 will run via Jakhapura-Jaroli route.
- Train Number 22850 Secunderabad-Shalimar Express from Secunderabad on 02.06.2023 will run via Jakhapura and Jaroli.
- Train Number 12801 Puri-New Delhi Purusottam Express from Puri on 02.06.2023 will run via Jakhapura & Jaroli route.
- Train Number 18477 Puri-Rishikesh Kalinga Utkal Express from Puri on 02.06.2023 will run via Angul-Sambalpur City-Jharsuguda Road-Ib route.
- Train Number 22804 Sambalpur-Shalimar Express from Sambalpur on 02.06.2023 will run via Sambalpur City-Jharsuguda Route.
- Train Number 12509 Bangalore-Guwahati Express from Bangalore on 01.06.2023 will run via Vizianagaram-Titilagarh-Jharsuguda-Tata route.
- Train Number 15929 Tambaram-New Tinsukia Express from Tambaram on 01.06.2023 will run via Ranital-Jaroli route.
- Partial Cancellation:
- Train Number 18022 Khurda Road-Kharagpur Express from Khurda Road on 02.06.2023 will run up to Baitarani Road and will remain cancelled from Baitarani Road to Kharagpur.
- Train Number 18021 Kharagpur-Khurda Road Express from Kharagpur on 03.06.2023 will originate from Baitarani Road to Khurda Road and remain cancelled from Kharagpur to Baitarani Road.
- Train Number 12892 Bhubaneswar-Bangiriposi Express from Bhubaneswar on 02.06.2023 will run up to Jajpur Keonjhar Road and will remain cancelled from Jajpur K Road to Bangiriposi.
- Train Number 12891 Bangiriposi-Bhubaneswar Express from Bangiriposi on 03.06.2023 will originate from Jajpur Keonjhar Road to Bhubaneswar and remain cancelled from Bangiriposi to Jajpur K Road.
- Train Number 08412 Bhubaneswar-Balasore MEMU from Bhubaneswar on 02.06.2023 will run up to Jenapur and will remain cancelled from Jenapur to Balasore.
- Train Number 18411 Balasore-Bhubaneswar MEMU on 03.06.2023 will run from Jenapur to Bhubaneswar instead of Balasore to Bhubaneswar