Railways not responsible for Amritsar accident: Lohani

Railways not responsible for Amritsar accident: Lohani

People gather near the site of a train accident at Joda Phatak in Amritsar, Friday, Oct 19, 2018. (Reuters Photo)

The railways was not informed about a Dussehra event along the tracks that led to the deaths of at least 61 people in Amritsar, Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani said on Saturday.

Lohani who visited the accident site in Amritsar, along with other top officials, said that the local administration had not informed railway authorities about the event.

"There was no information and no permission sought from us. The event took place at a place adjoining the railway land on private property," he said.

Though there was a manned level crossing close to the event site, it was closed for the incoming train. 

Since it was the main line, there was no speed restriction for the running of trains, he said adding that the railway should not be blamed for this incident. 

Separately, Ambala Division of Northern Railway has cancelled 8 trains on this route, 10 trains were terminated short of their destination and five were diverted to a different route. 


ALSO READ: Amritsar: People took selfies during tragedy

At least 61 people were killed and 72 injured on Friday evening after a crowd of Dussehra revellers that had spilled onto railway tracks while watching the burning of a Ravana effigy was run over by a train near here, officials said.

The train was coming from Jalandhar when the accident occurred at Joda Phatak near Amritsar, where at least 300 people were watching 'Ravana Dahan' at a ground adjacent to the tracks.

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