Probe to begin today

Probe to begin today

Commissioner for Railway Safety S K Mittal, who visited the accident spot on Saturday, said a probe will begin on Monday, another inquiry panel headed by Chairman of Railway Board Arunendra Kumar and Member (Electrical) Kul Bhushan is also probing the incident and are likely to submit their preliminary report in 10 days.

Railways officials said the report will be based on the preliminary inputs provided by a team from the Andhra Pradesh Forensic Science Laboratory (APFSL).

The inquiries, however, are going to be independent of each other. “Railways can institute any number of inquiries but the one done by his office is the statutory inquiry and a report will be submitted by the end of January,” Mittal told Deccan Herald.

“It is too early to say on what could have led to the fire. Let the probe begin,” he said when asked if the short circuit in the AC coach could have led to the fire.

Reports from Hyderabad said the Railways and APFSL have begun investigations.

Samples are being checked to ascertain whether inflammable material was present in the three-tier AC coach or was the fire due to a short-circuit.

Kumar inspected the gutted coach at Puttaparthi and also visited the accident site near Kothacheruvu railway station.

Forensic experts team led by A Sharada Avadhani, director, APFSL, visited the site to investigate and identify the bodies of the victims after conducting DNA profiling.

“It’s too early to come to a conclusion on the exact reason for the incident,” she told reporters. “As per our initial assessment, the fire began within 10 minutes after the train left Puttaparthi station,” she added.

The South Western Railways is ruling out the possibility of missing fire extinguishers in the ill fated B1 coach of the Bangalore-Nanded Express.

Divisional Railways Manager (DRM) A K Aggarwal claimed that since the incident occurred in the dead of the night, most passengers were asleep. “When the fire broke out, within minutes the coach was filled with smoke and possibly the passengers were not able to use the fire extinguishers,” he said.

Railway officials said several passengers could have died due to carbon dioxide inside the coach before the flames could engulf them. A clear picture will emerge only after forensic experts come out with their preliminary inquiry report. Also, two parallel inquiries have been ordered.

While the Commissioner for Railway Safety S K Mittal, who visited the spot on Saturday, said a probe will begin on Monday, another inquiry panel headed by the Chairman of Railway Board Arunendra Kumar and comprising Member (Electrical) Kul Bhushan is also probing the incident and are likely to submit their preliminary report in ten days.

Railways officials said the report will be based on the preliminary inputs provided by a team from the Andhra Pradesh Forensic Science Laboratory (APFSL).

The inquiries, however, are going to be independent of each other. “Railways can institute any number of inquiries but the one done by his office is the statutory inquiry and a report will be submitted by the end of January,” Mittal told Deccan Herald. “It is too early to say on what could have led to the fire. Let the probe begin,” he said when asked if the short circuit in the AC coach could have led to the fire.

Meanwhile, reports from Hyderabad said the Railways and APFSL have begun investigations. Samples are being checked to ascertain whether inflammable material was present in the three-tier AC coach or was the fire due to a short-circuit.

Kumar inspected the gutted coach at Puttaparthi and also visited the accident site near Kothacheruvu railway station.

Forensic experts team led by A Sharada Avadhani, director, APFSL, visited the site to investigate and identify the bodies of the victims after conducting DNA profiling.

“It’s too early to come to a conclusion on the exact reason for the incident,” she told reporters. “As per our initial assessment, the fire began within 10 minutes after the train left Puttaparthi station,” she added.

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