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Sunday, June 13, 2021

June 8, 1981, Forty Years Ago: Train tragedy toll

In the gruesome disaster that overtook the 416-down Samastipur-Banmukhi passenger on Saturday between Badlaghat and Dhamarghat stations of the Northeastern Railway.

By: Editorial |
June 8, 2021 3:26:49 am
65 bodies were recovered and 84 injured passengers rescued.

In the gruesome disaster that overtook the 416-down Samastipur-Banmukhi passenger on Saturday between Badlaghat and Dhamarghat stations of the Northeastern Railway. 65 bodies were recovered and 84 injured passengers rescued. An eerie atmosphere prevailed around the bridge over the Bagmati River, a tributary of the Kosi as two IAF helicopters and eight frogmen of the Navy were trying to pick bodies from the banks of the river. All the casualties enumerated so far are stated to be from the two bogies precariously hitched to the engine perched on the track over the bridge. They have since been removed from the bridge, which by all accounts, is still intact. Railway officials attribute the tragedy to a cyclone that swept the area when the train was crossing the bridge.

Zhao’s offer

The Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang indicated that his country would play a bigger role to safeguard peace and stability in Asia. He also proposed a “package solution on border problems” with India. He said such a solution “may be possible in the spirit of cooperation”.

Rao to visit Pak

The External Affairs Minister, P V Narasimha Rao, will leave for Islamabad on June 8 on a five-day official visit. He is of the view that the increase or decrease of tension in the subcontinent would depend to a substantial extent on Pakistan’s response to the developments in and around the region. Any increase in tension is bound to affect the security environment, he said.

Award for pottekkatt

The noted Malayalam fiction and travelogue writer S K Pottekkatt was named the winner of the Jnanpith Award for 1980 for his autobiographical work, Oru Desathinte Katha. The Jnanpith board chairman Niharranjan Ray said that the award will be presented in September.

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