Days after the horrific train tragedy in Odisha that stunned the entire world, rakes of a goods train ran over eight labourers, near Jajpur-Keonjhar Road station in the state on Wednesday, killing six of them and seriously injuring the other two, officials said.
The contractual labourers, engaged by a contractor for railway work, had taken shelter under the stabled rake (without engine) from the wind and rain of a ‘Norwester’ storm near Jajpur-Keonjhar Road, when the accident took place, East Coast Railway’s (ECoR) Chief Public Relation Officer Biswajit Sahu said.
The monsoon reserve rake without engine, at the line near Jajpur-Keonjhar Road station, rolled on due to heavy thunderstorms, he said, adding it had materials required for maintenance of railway tracks stationed for upcoming monsoon.
“It is a very unfortunate incident. The workers engaged by the contractor to carry out railway works were taking shelter under the stationed wagons. When the wagons started moving due to heavy wind flow, the workers were trying to come out from the tracks. This incident occurred at this time,” Sahu said.
The railway officials present at the spot have taken them to hospital. So far, six of them have died while two critically injured workers have been admitted in the SCB Medical College and Hospital, Cuttack, he said.
Divisional railway officials led by DRM Khurda Road rushed to the accident spot, he added.
Expressing deep grief over the unfortunate incident, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced Rs 5 lakh ex-gratia for the next to the kin of deceased persons. He also directed officials concerned to provide quality treatment to the injured workers and wished them speedy recovery.
Notably, at least 288 people died and over 1100 were left injured after Chennai-bound Coromandel Express, Howrah bound SMVP-Howrah Superfast Express and a good train were involved in a major accident near the Bahanaga Bazar railway station in Odisha’s Balasore district on June 2 evening.