Buhari condoles with Indian PM over train crash

An unnamed railway officer told Hindustan Times that it was likely that the accident happened due to cracked tracks as the engine did not derail whereas the coaches behind it did.

The passenger train was about midway through a 27-hour journey between the cities of Indore and Patna when it slid off the tracks at 3:10 a.m. Sunday.

India's railway system is the world's fourth largest, ferrying more than 20 million people each day, but it has a poor safety record, with thousands of people dying in accidents every year.

Past year a train accident in Uttar Pradesh killed 39 and injured 150. 90 rescue personnel and a 50-member medical team, which included five doctors, is now taking part in the rescue operation.

"Locals residents rushed to the spot and started pulling out the people - both dead and injured - from the damaged coaches with the help of district police and the fire department. We don't expect to find any more bodies", said Zaki Ahmed, the police inspector general in the city of Kanpur, about 65 km (40 miles) from Pukhrayan, the crash site.

Officials said the injured were removed to the nearest hospitals.

Suresh Prabu, India's railway minister also responded to the accident where he said he was "personally monitoring the situation closely". He said a special train has been arranged to take passengers from the derailed train to Patna, according to the PTI news agency.

Anxious relatives searched for missing family members among the injured and the dead at hospitals in Kanpur.

Out of the 410 tickets booked on the IRCTC website, accounting for 695 passengers of the unfortunate Indore-Patna express that derailed on Sunday killing at least 120 lives and leaving around 100 injured, only 126 (accounting for 209 passengers) included the recently announced travel insurance that costs less than Re 1.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed his concern over the derailment. "My thoughts are with the bereaved families", he wrote.

Kanpur is a major railway junction in north India and hundreds of trains pass through it daily.

Authorities have cancelled and diverted several trains after the accident along the track.

The accident was the worst since 2010 when a passenger train crashed into a freight train in the eastern state of West Bengal, killing 146 and injuring over 200.

A 2012 government report said nearly 15,000 people were killed every year on India's railways, describing the deaths as an annual "massacre".



Other news