Kushinagar Accident: 13 Children Killed as Train Hits School Van at Unmanned Railway Crossing
The children, students of Divine Public School, were killed on the spot.
New Delhi: Fourteen children were killed and eight others injured when their school van was hit by a train at an unmanned railway crossing in Uttar Pradesh’s Kushinagar area, around 50km from Gorakhpur, on Thursday morning.
The children, students of Divine Public School, were killed on the spot when Thawe-Kapatanganj passenger train (55075) crashed into the van at an unmanned crossing gate at Behpurva, said Railways spokesman Ved Prakash. The train was on way to Gorakhpur from Siwan.
There were at least 25 people, including children who were below the age of 10 years, the official said.
"It was unmanned level crossing gate at Behpurva, with Gate Mitra deployed there. He tried to stop but unfortunate incident happened at unmanned gate 45 near Dudhi station in Banaras division," the spokesperson said in New Delhi.
An accident relief medical train from Gorakhpur has been dispatched to the site, he said.
Injured children were rushed to Pandrauna Hospital which is 30 km from the accident site.
Expressing condolence, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath announced ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh for the families of the victims and directed Gorakhpur commissioner to conduct an inquiry into the accident.
कुशीनगर जिले में हुए दुर्भाग्यपूर्ण ट्रेन दुर्घटना में स्कूली बच्चों की मृत्यु पर गहरा दुःख पंहुचा। ईश्वर से दिवंगत आत्मा की शांति एवं परिजनों को संबल देने की प्रार्थना करता हूँ। दुर्घटना से प्रभावित लोगों के समुचित इलाज की व्यवस्था कराने व हर सम्भव मदद करने के निर्देश दिए हैं।— Yogi Adityanath (@myogiadityanath) April 26, 2018
Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, too, expressed his grief over the accident and announced an ex-gratia of Rs two lakh each to the kin of the victims.
"I am saddened by the news of school children dying in a train accident. I have spoken to senior railway officials and ordered an inquiry into it," Goyal said in a tweet.
कुशीनगर में हुए हादसे में स्कूली बच्चों की मृत्यु का दुःखद समाचार मिला, मैंने सीनियर अधिकारियों द्वारा हादसे की इन्क्वायरी के निर्देश दिए हैं, मृतको के परिवार जनों को रेलवे की ओर से दो लाख रुपये की सहायता दी जायेगी जो उप्र सरकार द्वारा दी जा रही दो लाख की राशि के अतिरिक्त होगी।— Piyush Goyal (@PiyushGoyal) April 26, 2018
The administration has since closed down the school. The school principle/manager, Karim Khan, has also been arrested. He has been charged of operating the school without adequate certificates and possessing a school van that lacked fitness papers.
This is the second such accident to claim lives of school children this month. On April 10, 27 children below the age of 10 had died when their school bus fell into a 100-feet deep gorge in Himachal Pradesh’s Kangra.
With PTI inputs
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