Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot Saturday berated Piyush Goyal for the handling of Shramik Special trains, and said he should be divested of his responsibility as the Railways Minister so that he could concentrate only on raising funds for the BJP.
The Congress leader claimed that as many as 40 Shramik Special trains — the service was launched on May 1 to ferry stranded migrant workers to their homes — have been delayed.
"One took 9 days to reach and 80 deaths reported so far (on Shramik Specials). I suggest HPM to let Mr Goyal be Minister without portfolio as we have never heard of such mess in Indian railways ever before," Gehlot tweeted, without evidence on the death claim.
"Let him concentrate on fundraising for BJP only," he wrote.
The Railways had on Friday denied continuing allegations of Shramik Special trains running abnormally late.
At a press conference, Railway Board Chairman V K Yadav had said 90 per cent of the migrant trains ran with an average speed higher than regular mail express trains.
"There was some fake news that a train reached Siwan (from Surat) in nine days... We diverted only 1.8 per cent trains. From 20-24 May, 71 trains were diverted because of high demand for trains to UP, Bihar, where 90 per cent trains were going from across the country," Yadav had said.
On the number of deaths on these trains, he had said the Railways was still compiling data on such incidents.