LUCKNOW, July 10 (IANS): About 35 people were killed dead and at least 200 injured Sunday noon as 13 coaches of a speeding Kalka-bound train derailed in Uttar Pradesh, trapping hundreds of passengers for hours in the mangled mess. The army was hurriedly deployed in the rescue operations.
The accident, which took place as the Kalka Mail was nearing the Malwan railway station in Fatehpur district, toppled some of the coaches over two adjoining rail tracks, sealing off the busy route to Howrah from where the train was coming.
The overturned coaches included the air-conditioned ones and the pantry car. At least one coach was crushed by another. The accident site is about 140 km from here.
Even as dazed and slightly wounded passengers made it out of the train coaches, with or without help from villagers who were the first to rush to the site, the death toll began to steadily climb.
Uttar Pradesh Special Director General of Police Brij Lal told IANS that while 31 bodies had been taken out, he believed at least 35 passengers had been killed.
The reason for the accident was not clear. But some officials said the train was going at over 100 km per hour when the driver applied emergency brakes just before the Malwan station.