Metro mishap: Victim was electrocuted, suggests preliminary investigation
Kolkata: Sajal Kanjilal (66), the Kasba resident who was dragged through the tunnel between Park Street and Maidan Metro stations in Saturday's accident, might have been electrocuted to death, hints the preliminary investigation report carried out by Metro Railway.
In a shocking incident, Kanjilal was dragged through the tunnel, hanging precariously from an AC rake with his hand stuck in the door. As the rake started moving, the victim eventually hit the tunnel wall and fell on the track. He was declared brought dead by the doctors at SSKM Hospital.
As the moving AC rake stopped with a jerk inside the tunnel and the door opened soon after leaving Park Street, the victim fell on the track and came in contact with the third rail, which led to his electrocution, suggests preliminary investigation. The exact cause of his death will however be confirmed after the post-mortem report comes in.
The inquiry committee recorded statements of the motorman, conducting motorman, the guard and chief loco inspector at the Railway Bhawan on Sunday, to know exactly what happened at the time of the accident.
The motorman and the guard were suspended by the Metro Railway authorities immediately after the incident. Their statements would be verified by the engineers of the Integral Coach Factory in Chennai, where these rakes were made.
Saturday's accident has brought to light some serious lapses on the part of Metro Railway. Questions have been raised on why the door sensor did not function at the time of the incident. Had the door sensor functioned normally, it would have opened before the train started moving.
In normal cases the doors automatically open, if anything gets stuck in them. The commuters have also raised question on the role of the guard whose job was to ensure that all the doors were properly closed before the train started.
It may be mentioned here that it was one of the five AC rakes which were brought in from Chennai in 2018. After the rakes were made operational, it was found that some of them had problems with the door sensors, braking system and air-conditioning machines. The matter was also communicated to the rail board. Two of the five rakes were subsequently sent back.
Trinamool Congress MP Mala Roy and state Disaster Management minister Javed Khan visited the family members of the victim and assured all possible assistance from the state government.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had on Saturday called the incident tragic and accused Metro Railways for not conducting proper maintenance of rakes. Banerjee also assured financial assistance to the deceased's family, as well as employment for a member of the family.
Kanjilal used to sell little magazines at Nandan. Some group theatre personalities on Sunday staged demonstration outside Park Street Metro station, demanding compensation from Metro Railways for the victim's family.
Claiming the victim as one of their colleagues, the theatre personalities wanted to meet the station manager to submit a memorandum.