Lucknow: The Uttar Pradesh government was in a state of total confusion about the facts related to the train accident in Muzaffarnagar on Saturday.
In an official release, the DGP office stated that the number of deaths was 23 while the number of injured persons was 400. Minutes later, the DGP sent another release claiming hat the number of injured persons had gone down to 40. The home secretary, meanwhile, said that the number of injured persons was 81.
There was confusion about the number of bogies that had derailed. Officials in the police department and the home department oscillated between six, eight and 10 bogies.
Railway officials conveniently said that all facts would be briefed by the railway ministry since ‘Delhi is closer to the accident site than Lucknow’.
Meanwhile, ambulances were summoned from Muzaffarnagar and Meerut to ferry the patients to hospitals and all hospitals in the adjoining districts were immediately put on high alert.
UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath gave his condolences on the deaths and directed all officials to ensure proper treatment of the injured passengers. The CM directed two ministers, Suresh Khanna and Satish Mahana, to reach the site of derailment and supervise rescue operations.
Railway officials set up helpline numbers for people inquiring about their relatives who were travelling in the train.
Meanwhile, railway minister Suresh Prabhu ordered an inquiry into the derailment. He said he was personally monitoring the situation and strict action will be taken in case of any lapse.
He also announced Rs 3.5 lakh ex-gratia for those who lost their lives, Rs 50,000 for the seriously injured and Rs 25,000 for those who received minor injuries....