New Delhi: President Pranab Mukherjee, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress chief Sonia Gandhi led the nation in condoling the train tragedy in UP’s Kanpur Dehat district in which more than 115 people were today killed and over 200 injured.
“I am sad to learn about the accident in which many have lost their lives and a number of persons are injured. I am sure that the state government is providing all possible assistance to the bereaved families as well as medical aid to the injured,” Mukherjee said in a message to Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik.
The Prime Minister in a tweet said, “Anguished beyond words on the loss of lives due to the derailing of the Patna-Indore express. My thoughts are with the bereaved families.”
He said Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu is personally monitoring the situation and announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh for the next of kin of those killed and Rs 50,000 for those seriously injured in the mishap from the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund.
Modi observed two-minute silence to condole the loss of lives at the Rail Vikas Shivir at Surajkund on the outskirts of the national capital asking the railways to work toward achieving the zero accident target to make train journeys safe.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh also expressed deep pain over the loss of lives. He said there will be an inquiry into the incident to find out the detail cause of it.
Five NDRF teams were deployed to rescue passengers trapped in the mangled bogies of the train even as the Home Minister gave instructions to the force’s chief, R K Pachnanda.
Prabhu has ordered a probe into the train tragedy and announced an ex-gratia of Rs 3.5 lakh for the families of those killed and Rs 50,000 for those grievously injured.
Sonia Gandhi in her condolence message said, “Words can’t describe the pain and anguish of those who lost their near and dear ones and the entire country stands in solidarity to share this unbearable sorrow.”
She also asked the local Congress unit to assist in the relief and rescue operations along with the authorities.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav said an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh will be paid to next of kin of the deceased.
“If the incident has taken place, first responsibility lies on the state government as hospitals, ambulances and the entire administration is of the state. We have fulfilled our responsibilities and our priority at present is to save maximum lives,” he said.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar cancelled a function to release a report card of his government on completion of one year in office and expressed grief over the mishap.
Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her Assam counterpart Sarbananda Sonowal expressed condolence to the bereaved families.