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Train crash kills 65

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by ngoshwe, May 28, 2010.

  1. ngoshwe

    ngoshwe JF-Expert Member

    May 28, 2010
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    Maoists suspected of sabotaging India train, 65 dead


    Maoist rebels are suspected of sabotaging a high-speed train in eastern India on Friday, killing at least 65 people after it smashed into the path of a goods train, officials said.

    Local television showed the mangled wreckage of capsized carriages across the tracks and the death toll could rise as many passengers were still trapped. At least 200 people were injured.
    "As of now we have got information that 65 dead bodies have been recovered. There may be many more," Samar Ghosh, Home Secretary of West Bengal state where the incident occurred told NDTV news channel.
    Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee said a bomb had hit the train, but police said they were also looking at other sabotage methods such as the removal of the tracks' "fish plates."
    "From whatever I have been told the apprehension is the Maoists were involved," Banerjee said.
    The crash occurred in an area known to be a stronghold of Maoist rebels. Maoists, who say they are fighting for the rights of the poor and landless, have attacked trains in the past and have stepped up attacks in recent months.

    Indian rescue workers and others surround a train that derailed and crashed early Friday in Sardiha, about 90 miles southwest of Kolkata, killing at least 65 people. Maoist rebels are suspected of sabotage. (Bikas Das, Associated Press / May 28, 2010)

    "The driver heard a loud noise which indicates there could be a blast. A detail investigation will reveal more, but definitely there was lot of tinkering done to the tracks," Vivek Sahay, a senior railway official, told reporters.
    "It was definitely sabotage."
    West Bengal official Ghosh said a portion of the tracks was found missing.
    The Maoists number thousands of fighters across swathes of eastern and central India. In April, 76 police were killed in an ambush in one of the heaviest tolls in years.
    Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has described the insurgency as India's biggest internal security challenge and his Congress-led government has been under increasing political pressure to deal with the insurgents.
    The Gyaneshwari Express, which was going to Mumbai from the eastern metropolis of Kolkata in West Bengal state, was derailed in the state's Jhargram area at around 1:30 a.m. (9 p.m. British time on Thursday).
    "The cries of women and children from inside the compartments have died down. They (railway staff) are still struggling to cut through metal and bring out those trapped inside," Amitava Rath, a local journalist at the scene of the crash, told Reuters.
    A reporter of the Telegraph newspaper described a scene of chaos and panic at the site. "Rescuers are struggling to save the survivors and get the bodies out," Naresh Jana told Reuters.
    "I can see body parts hanging out of the compartments and under the wheels. I can hear people, women, crying for help from inside the affected coaches."
    The incident comes days after a passenger airliner crashed in southern India, killing 158 people, underscoring safety issues and concern that India's ageing infrastructure was failing to keep pace with an economic boom.
    The Maoists had called a "black week" to condemn what they call police atrocities against innocent villagers and for an immediate halt to an armed campaign against them in India.
    In March, police suspected their hand in the derailment of India's most prestigious high-speed Rajdhani Express. Maoists have also taken over trains in past years in a show of strength, holding them for hours.
    The rebels, who often attack police, government buildings and infrastructure such as railway stations, have in recent months stepped up attacks in response to a government security offensive to clear them out of their jungle bases.
    The decades-old movement is now present in a third of the country. They are mostly spread in rural pockets of 20 of India's 28 states and hurt potential business worth billions of dollars.

  2. ngoshwe

    ngoshwe JF-Expert Member

    May 28, 2010
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    India train crash leaves 65 dead in West Bengal state

    Authorities suspect rebel sabotage after the passenger train derails in a Maoist stronghold and is hit by a freight train. The lack of roads and the threat of an ambush slow rescue efforts.

    Reporting from New Delhi -
    Sabotage by Maoist rebels was suspected after an Indian passenger train derailed early Friday, sending railroad cars crashing onto an adjoining track. An oncoming freight train slammed into many of those cars, killing at least 65 people and injuring 200.

    The area of West Bengal state where the disaster occurred, near the city of Sardiha and about 90 miles southwest of Kolkata, formerly Calcutta, is a known Maoist stronghold that has seen several recent attacks.

    There was initial confusion on the exact cause of the disaster, with some officials and the engineer on the passenger train blaming an explosion, some uninjured passengers saying they heard no blast, and police saying metal parts used to hold sections of track together were missing and apparently removed in an act of sabotage.

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    India's aging railroads experience their highest volume of travelers in May, with more than 20 million passengers each day on the 69,300-mile system.

    The disaster occurred about 1:30 a.m., when most passengers were sleeping, and it took more than an hour for police and medical crews to reach the site.

    Even then, rescue operations were hampered by the lack of roads, the blocked tracks and concern that the Maoists might have set an ambush or booby trap to kill rescue crews rushing to the scene.

    Angry passengers complained of the slow response, with some claiming that luggage and valuables were stolen by onlookers in the confusion.

    E. Mitra, a doctor at nearby Kharagpur Railway Hospital, said 30 bodies had been taken there, but "a lot of dead bodies are strewn under the derailed carriages."

    Samar Ghosh, home secretary of West Bengal state, said that 65 bodies had been found.

    As dawn broke, air force helicopters scrambled to assist as video footage showed crowds of onlookers standing on the roof of derailed carriages, watching soldiers cutting holes in a rail car roof with a gas-powered circular saw.

    Authorities said 13 cars of the Gyaneshwari Express traveling to Mumbai from Howrah derailed. Three were mangled. Many of the casualties were reportedly caused by the collision with the freight train. Video showed the freight train engine fused at a right angle to one of the rear passenger cars.

    Vivek Sahai, a Railways Ministry official, said Maoists had declared a "black week" starting midnight Thursday, a period of strikes and stepped-up activities against the government, so transportation workers were on alert.

    "There was a massive jerk, and we thought the Maoists had stopped the train to hijack it," an unidentified witness told a local TV station. "But thank God it was an accident … at least many people are saved. This area is very dangerous, very dangerous."

    A railway worker reportedly examined the section of track at 11 p.m., a little more than two hours earlier, and reported no problem. Four trains had reportedly passed over the line in the previous 90 minutes.

    Mamata Banerjee, India's railways minister and a politician from West Bengal, rushed to the scene to announce compensation of $11,000 and a job in her ministry for the families of those killed and $2,200 for anyone injured.

    In October, a train in the area was seized for several hours by Maoists before being released. In March and earlier this month, Maoists blew up railroad tracks nearby.

    "Police in the area now have raised quite a good force and have been carrying out operations, so they are targeting weak spots," said B.K. Ponwar, head of the Counter-Terrorism and Jungle Warfare College based in Jharkhand state, also a Maoist stronghold. "It's easy to make [an explosive] contraption; only one person can set it.

    "The easiest is railway tracks," Ponwar added. "They can't be guarded everywhere."

    Maoists, who have been battling the government for decades, operate in 20 of India's 28 states and have 10,000 to 20,000 fighters, according to the Home Ministry.

    Concentrated in some of India's most impoverished states, the Maoists have won support from the poor, especially landless peasants angry over local corruption, weak governance and the growing wealth gap. Despite India's high economic growth rates, vast numbers of people have not seen much improvement in their lives.

    In many places, the government controls the roads, but the Maoists control the jungle and villages. Aware that their strength depends on the state's continued ineffectiveness, militants often attack infrastructure as well as police and army patrols.

    In recent months, the militants have increased attacks in response to a police and army offensive initiated late last year across several "red corridor" states.

    The rebels are funded in part by hundreds of millions of dollars that they extort each year by threatening companies. Their arsenal includes automatic rifles, shoulder-fired rocket launchers, mines and related explosives, some of which have been stolen from Indian authorities and some purchased from Chinese smugglers.

    India: Train crash leaves 65 dead in West Bengal state - latimes.com
  3. Ab-Titchaz

    Ab-Titchaz Content Manager Staff Member

    May 28, 2010
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    Poleni kwa wafiwa.

    Hawa Maoist rebels banaaee!!
  4. Ben Saanane

    Ben Saanane Verified User

    May 29, 2010
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    China ndo wanawapa kiburi hawa jamaa.china na India haziivi,pia pakistan wanawaunga mkono.ni hatari mno
  5. Abdulhalim

    Abdulhalim JF-Expert Member

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    I wish ningeelewa ajenda yao hawa jamaa..duh.
  6. M

    Mokoyo JF-Expert Member

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    Mzozo wa Kashmir nini huu unaendelea kimyakimya?
  7. Ben Saanane

    Ben Saanane Verified User

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    Hao jama wana sap[oti kubwa ya maskini walio wengi....maswala ya ardhi ndiyo tatizo lao.Pia ishu ya kashmiri inachochewa na hawa jamaa wanatumniwa na pakistani.Pia China wanawatiumia kwa kuwa wana mgogoro wa mpaka na India,walishapigana vita 1962,na bado kuna mzozo wa chinichini