Utkal Express derailment: Audio clip exposes staffs' negligence
An unverified audio clip in Hindi seems to suggest a conversation between a gateman and his friend who is also a railway employee is doing the rounds. The conversation between the duo took place after the Utkal Express derailment incident took place in Muzaffarnagar which killed 22 people.
In the audio clip, the rail employee asks another about the Utkal Express derailment. To which the gateman replies that welding work was underway and a traffic block was denied but the JE started the work. He said that at that time, a piece of track was cut and kept apart for maintenance as it could not be welded and the train came.
"I was closing the gate... Utkal was coming and there was no track, so the train derailed," he said, adding, "The welding machine was in the middle of the track."
Yet another audio conversation between Khatauli station master Prakash Singh and a section controller for Northern Railway in Delhi, demanding a 20-minute block for the operating staff, has also surfaced.
The section controller can be heard asking the station master for a 20 minute block. But the man who is allegedly a section controller for Northern Railway said that block can't be given. There is no time.
This audio clip indicates that the request of the ground staff to block the rail traffic for 20 minutes to carry out maintenance work was denied.