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Eyewitnesses spell out horror of West Bengal train collision

By Nairita Das

Sainthia (West Bengal), July 19 (ANI): Rescue workers and eyewitness spelled out the horror of the train accident involving Uttarbanga Express and the stationary Bhagalpur-Ranchi Vananchal Express at Sainthia station in West Bengal's Birbhum District on Monday.

Locals from the surrounding areas came out in large numbers and helped in rescue operations immediately after the collision.

"It was the last bogie of Vananchal. I did not see it because I had arrived late, but then I came to know that it was hit so fiercely that the bogies pilled up on each other due to the impact," said Guddu Majumdar, an eyewitness.

People at the spot described the horrific scene, which was laden with cries of trapped victims and severed limbs splattered all across the railway tracks.

Rescue officials said that as soon as they reached the spot, their first priority was to evacuate trapped victims from the mangled coaches of the trains.

"We reached here at 8: 45 a.m. Soon after reaching here, we started the rescue work. First thing we did was to evacuate the victims, the trapped victims," said Timir Kumar Mandhata, Officiating Commandant of National Disaster Response Force.

An inquiry headed by the Commissioner of Railway Safety has been ordered into the incident that claimed the lives of 60 passengers and left over hundred others injured.

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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