Train tragedy toll rises to 98

Train tragedy toll rises to 98

South East Railway officials put the number of injured at 250. Five of the seriously injured have been taken to Kolkata for treatment.

"Ninety-eight bodies have so far been taken out from the mangled coaches. 96 bodies have been kept at the Midnapore Hospital and two at the Kharagpur Railway Hospital," SP, West Midnapore, Manoj Kumar Verma said.

Only 25 bodies have been identified so far and postmortem of 60 bodies has been done.
Railway officials said the toll could rise as the worst-affected S-5 and S-6 coaches were yet to be cut open. Bodies could be inside the two mangled coaches as also under the engine of four wagons of the goods train, the officials said.

Maoists derailed the Howrah-Kurla Lomanya Tilak Gyaneshwari Super Deluxe Express yesterday when the train was running between Khemasoli and Sardiya stations.
Verma said the bodies are being preserved in such a manner that a DNA test can be conducted on them in case of need.

"Two temporary camps have been set up at the Midnapore Hospital where relatives of the dead and injured can get information. Besides displaying the photographs of the dead at the hospital, officials have uploaded them on government websites for the convenience of the affected families," Verma said.

The Midnapore Medical College and Hospital, where all the bodies have been kept, is facing a space crunch as its morgue is not equipped to handle such a large number of cadavers.

A garage of the hospital has been turned into a makeshift morgue with the bodies being kept on slabs of ice.

"The summer heat, however, is proving to be a problem," hospital officials said.
The hospital authorities have placed a large LCD screen where the images of the bodies were being displayed to help relatives identify them.

Among the injured, there were children in the age group of three to four years who were separated from their parents in the accident.

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