Railways Minister announces Rs 2 crore for development of villages near Odisha train accident site

Vaishnaw also expressed gratitude to the local residents and various welfare organisations of Bahanaga for coming to the rescue of injured passengers and becoming the first responders of the accident.
Union Minister for Railways Ashwini Vaishnaw announcing the package at Bahanaga in Odisha on Tuesday.(Photo | Express)
Union Minister for Railways Ashwini Vaishnaw announcing the package at Bahanaga in Odisha on Tuesday.(Photo | Express)

BHUBANESWAR: Union Minister for Railways Ashwini Vaishnaw on Tuesday announced a Rs 2 crore package for Bahanaga Bazaar in Balasore district where the tragic train crash claimed 292 lives and left over 900 injured on June 2.

After inspecting the on-going restoration work at Bahanaga Bazaar station, the minister said that Rs 1 crore had been allotted from his MP LAD fund for peripheral development of Bahanaga while another Rs 1 crore had been allotted by  Indian Railways for renovation of Bahanaga hospital.

Vaishnaw also expressed gratitude to the local residents and various welfare organisations of Bahanaga for coming to the rescue of injured passengers and becoming the first responders of the accident.

He felicitated some of them for their heroic efforts to rescue the victims and saving precious lives. He also interacted with the locals about what development works can be undertaken here.

Before a massive rescue operation was mounted by the central and state agencies, local residents from nearby areas rushed to the spot to save passengers trapped in the mangled coaches.

Using their cell phone flashlights and bamboo ladders, the locals rescued injured passengers and held the fort until the National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF), Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF), fire services personnel and medical team arrived at the spot.

"It was remarkable the way people of Bahanaga came forward, helped train passengers immediately after the accident and worked with Railways and local administration. The world is appreciating their contribution, which is really commendable," said Vaishnaw.

The Railways minister urged people to constitute a local area development committee with some senior citizens and eminent persons of the locality as members and submit a list of proposed projects to be undertaken for the development of the villages surrounding Bahanaga Bazaar.

He said the railways would provide assistance for the development of the local hospital and he would request the state government to appoint required number of doctors and paramedical staff to fill the vacancies.

On the restoration work, Vaishnaw said, tracks have been restored completely and some signalling work is on. Signal cables have been connected after a new gumti (cabin) was set up there and the rest of the work will be completed within next few days, he added.

The minister later visited Balasore district headquarters hospital and met doctors and other hospital staff who worked overtime and saved the lives of many injured passengers. He also reviewed Balasore railway station development works.

On June 2 evening, Shalimar-Chennai Coromandel Express rammed into a stationary iron ore laden freight train and derailed before being collided with the two rear end coaches of Bengaluru-Howrah Superfast Express. Altogether 17 coaches of both the passenger trains were affected.

Related Stories

No stories found.
The New Indian Express
www.newindianexpress.com