Twelve people have been reported dead and over 150 are feared to be injured after the Ernakulam-bound Inter City Express (Train No: 12677) derailed near Anekal Road, 38 km from Bengaluru and close to the Tamil Nadu city of Hosur, on Friday at 7:45 AM. The train had departed from Bangalore City Railway Station at 6:15 AM.
Sources say that over 150 people may have been injured in the accident, which took place on Friday morning near Mulagondapalli and Chandrapuram, shortly after the superfast train passed Anekal Road railway station, where it does not make a scheduled stop. Ambulances and fire tenders from Tamil Nadu and Karnataka were rushed to the spot. Rescue teams are using gas-cutters to reach passengers trapped beneath the debris. Three bodies retrieved from the debris are yet to be identified.
Yahoo India spoke to a passenger on board the train who said that about seven or eight bogies of the Ernakulam-bound day train had derailed. According to eyewitness reports, the locomotive caught fire and subsequently, some coaches of the train derailed. The engine and pantry car also caught fire, it was reported. Sources say there may be many injured among the passengers as some of them were trapped in the mangled bogies and unable to leave the wreckage. Nine seriously injured passengers have been admitted to hospitals in the vicinity.
Talking to NDTV, an eyewitness who identified himself as Vinay said that there may be many casualties. "I saw them crushed before my eyes -- I think they may have passed away," he told the channel over the phone.
"Our relief and rescue team has reached the spot along with the medical train. Ambulances have also been rushed to by the state administration. We are trying to find out the people trapped inside the coaches, while the injured have been sent to hospital," Anil Saxena, Railway Board PRO, told ANI.
"At this stage there are some casualties suspected but there is no authentic information as of now. Our focus at this stage is more at the relief and rescue operation," he added.
Abhishek Goyal, DCP-Crime, Bengaluru, tweeted that the accident occurred at 7:45 AM, adding that rescue work was in progress.
Union Minister for Railways Suresh Prabhu's tweet that a 'boulder fell on the track in Ghat section, train hit it' drew flak on Twitter, with angry responses accusing the minister of spreading misinformation. It is understood that there is no 'ghat section' on this stretch of the railway.
The minister tweeted his condolences shortly after his first tweet about the accident.
With input from Agencies