'Some doubt over West Bengal train mishap', says Mamata Banerjee

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Kolkata, July 19 (ANI): Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee today said there was some doubt over the West Bengal train accident in which at least 49 people were killed.

Banerjee told reporters while leaving for the accident site: "We have some doubt in our mind. We are searching for information. Let us now find details."

She further said: "We are really sorry for this. Sorry to see two incidents take place in West Bengal in two months."

"We will take necessary action. We will take strong steps whoever is behind this."

Banerjee also declared an ex-gratia of Rs five lakh for the dead and Rs one lakh to the injured.

She also promised jobs to the kin of the dead.

The speeding Sealdah-bound Uttar Banga Express rammed into the stationary Bhagalpur-Ranchi Vananchal Express from the rear at Sainthia station in West Bengal's Birbhum district.

The accident occurred around 1.50 am when the Uttarbanga Express overshot a signal.

Three rear compartments of the Vananchal Express bore the brunt of the impact and were completely mangled.

Relief operations are on and around 32 bodies have been reportedly removed from the wreckage.

According to reports, equipment like gas cutters are being used to rescue passengers struck in the mangled bogies.

About 175 blood bottles are being rushed from neighbouring hospitals to the hospitals in Rampurhat and Shiuri where the injured are admitted.

Teams of doctors have also been sent. These includes 20 doctors from the state government, doctors from the disaster management department and Army doctors

An inquiry headed by the Commissioner of Railway Safety has been ordered into the incident.

Railway authorities have opened several helpline numbers and control rooms in Sealdah, Malda, Bhagalpur and Howrah.

Helpline numbers: Ranchi: 0651-2600263/64, 2460488, 2461404 -- Sealdah: 033-23503535, 23503537, -- Malda: 06436-222061 -- Bhagalpur: 06412-4222433 -- Jamalpur 063444-3101. (ANI)

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