A 45-year-old migrant labourer was found dead in a toilet of a 'Shramik Special' train when it was being cleaned by workers at Uttar Pradesh's Jhansi station, four days after he boarded it for Gorakhpur, officials said on Friday.
The body was found when the train was opened for maintenance and sanitisation on May 27 and he had boarded it on May 23, they said.
The Jhansi-Gorakhpur train left on May 23 and reached Gorakhpur on May 24, then, as per protocol, its rake was sent back to Jhansi for maintenance and sanitisation on May 27, the officials said.
The deceased was identified as Mohan Lal Sharma, a resident of Basti district in the state, who, according to family members, worked at a factory in Mumbai.
Along with his Aadhaar card, a May 23 train ticket to Gorakhpur, some documents and cash were recovered, officials in Jhansi said.
On the Jhansi to Gorakhpur rail route, Basti comes before Gorakhpur.
A railway spokesperson in Delhi said the train was travelling from Jhansi to Gorakhpur on May 23 and reached its destination on May 24.
The victim was travelling by the Jhansi-Gorakhpur train and only authorised passengers were on board, the spokesperson said.
"The first opportunity for maintenance and sanitisation for the railways was when the rake reached Jhansi on May 27, when the staff recovered the body," North Central Railway spokesperson Ajit Kumar Singh said.
Officials said that the movement of the train has been traced and at no point did any railway authority receive any call for medical help from anyone on the train.
According to protocol after passengers de-board from 'Shramik Special' trains, it is locked and the rake is sent back. It is cleaned when the empty rakes reach back to their destination.
Lal probably had reached Jhansi through some means and had boarded the train here to reach home in Basti, officials in Jhansi said.
The body was found when the train, which had gone to Gorakhpur from Jhansi and then returned, was being cleaned, Government Railway Police (GRP) police station in-charge Anjana Verma said.
According to information given by Lal's family, the deceased worked in a chips factory in Mumbai and could have reached here by some means and later boarded the train home.
The body has been sent for post-mortem by the GRP and the health department has taken samples for COVID-19 testing.
The body was found in the toilet of a coach of 'Shramik Special' train number '04186'.
Lal's details were gathered from his Aadhaar card and other documents, the officials said.
Verma said five members of Lal's family have reached here from Basti and his post-mortem is being done at a local medical college.