At least three persons may have escaped the derailment, only to die of other causes. Anuradha Shankar, Additional Director General (ADG), Railway Police, who visited the spot at about 2:30 am on Wednesday, said one girl had died of a snakebite. She said she saw a water snake wrapped around the girl’s ankle.
Another victim, a youth, was electrocuted when he jumped out of a coach. The youth reportedly hit an electricity pole. “He was charred beyond recognition,” said Vishal Agarwal, a local businessman who saw the body.
Shankar said another man tried to jump out of a toilet window, but died after the rushing water pushed him under a coach.
The girl’s body is among the 18 that have not been identified so far. “This number is likely to increase,” said Shankar. The unidentified bodies have been sent to Bhopal. “The tragedy is that most of the victims were travelling in the general compartment. This means that we cannot identify them,” said Shankar.
The Kamayani Express was the first to derail, followed by the Janata Express. While a large part of the Kamayani Express had managed to cross the bridge, the Janata Express engine still lay on the bridge.