January 16, 2022 6:13:35 am
Moksidul Islam (30), a farmer and a resident of Domohani area in Jalpaiguri district was one of the many who started rescue operations after the train accident. Along with others, he helped some people come out of the coaches and alerted the police and fire brigade.
What were you doing when the accident took place?
I was playing cricket with my friends in a nearby field when I heard a loud sound from adjacent railway tracks. We saw that the train derailed and several coaches fell beside the railway tracks. There was dust everywhere and for a few moments, the coaches could not be seen.
What did you do after the accident?
As a large number of passengers inside the derailed coaches crying for help, we rushed into the tracks to help them come out. Several people were injured and it was difficult in the beginning to get inside the coaches. Then more people from villages on both sides of the tracks came in with rods and bamboos and helped in the rescue operation. Then I called up the police and the fire brigade. Initial rescue operation was done by local residents.
Have you ever seen an incident like this?
No. This is the first time I witnessed a massive train accident. I had heard about the Jnaneshwari Express train accident that occurred in 2010. There has never been an accident of this magnitude in this area before.
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How was your experience?
It felt like a nightmare. People were crying for help and most of them could not speak due to shock. It was emotionally draining to watch so many people injured and a few lifeless bodies. I cannot recall having seen something like this before in my life. I could not sleep that night.
What is situation in the area right now?
As there has never been an accident like this in this area, many are coming here from nearby villages to take a look at the derailed coaches. They are taking pictures of the damaged train and even selfies. Locals selling snacks and ice cream have set up shops temporarily.
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