RELATIVES rushed from counter to counter at the Patna railway station to get information as chaos reigned over the names of the dead and injured in the accident involving the Indore-Patna Express. For a long time, the Government Railway Police and district administration could only provide the list of injured. They offered a special train, free passes and money exchange facilities but asked people to wait for official information or any update from family sources.
Overall, 235 passengers boarded the Indore-Patna Express for Patna. By Sunday evening, the Railways had confirmed four casualties from Bihar.
Of the 37 injured persons from the state, 14 are said to be seriously injured. At least 40 people from Bihar had left for Kanpur by evening, in search of loved ones.
One of the dead was Siwan native Ratnika, on her way to her hometown for a family wedding. While relatives could confirm that her husband Subodh had survived and was admitted in a hospital in Kanpur, the couple’s daughters are missing. Family members left in the evening for Kanpur, admitting they were scared about the fate of the two girls, Shruti, 5, and Shreya, 3. Their names were not on the list of injured that the Patna authorities finally received.
A relative said the family was on its way to attend the wedding of Subodh’s niece, scheduled for November 23 in Siwan. “The tilak function was scheduled for Monday,” the relative said, refusing to give his name. Subodh works in a cement factory at Indore.
Apart from Ratnika, the other confirmed casualties from Bihar included Majid Ahmad, a resident of Kalyanpur in East Champaran, Rajat Kumar from Kuthal, Patna, and Anil Kishore from Bitta Khurma village of Rohtas. S K Tiwari, a relative of passenger Ramakant Tiwari, a resident of Sarmera, Nalanda, said, “We had been calling Ramakant’s mobile number. After some attempts, a doctor picked up and said Ramakant was being treated.”
Patna District Magistrate Sanjay Kumar Agarwal said, “We have kept ambulances ready and will arrange vehicles to drop passengers coming from Kanpur. We have also got a bank stall to provide new currency to passengers’ relatives.”