Railway Minister orders inquiry into Kushinagar train-school van mishap
New Delhi: Railway Minister Piyush Goyal on Thursday ordered an inquiry into the Kushinagar train-school van accident and announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh for the kin of the deceased.
The minister also said that the Railways will provide an ex gratia amount of Rs 1 lakh for those with serious injuries and Rs 50,000 for those simple injuries.
Thirteen children were killed and eight others injured when a train rammed into their school van at an unmanned railway crossing in Uttar Pradesh's Kushinagar area, around 50 km from Gorakhpur, this morning.
In a statement, Goyal said he was deeply anguished and pained by the loss of lives of young school children at an unmanned level crossing (UMLC) in Kushinagar.
"My thoughts are with families of the deceased and I pray for the early recovery of the injured. Ministry of Railways will provide an ex gratia amount of Rs 2 lakh for kin of the deceased, Rs 1 lakh for those with serious injuries and Rs 50,000 for those with simple injuries," the railway minister said in the statement.
He said that he has ordered a high-level inquiry into the incident, adding "We stand committed to take all possible steps to avoid such accidents in future". Talking to reporters here, Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani said there was a rail mitra (rail volunteer) at the spot, who tried to stop the school van, but the driver did not stop, adding that this is the first accident at an unmanned level crossing this year.
Lohani said there are currently 3,479 unmanned level crossings on broad gauge of Indian Railways.
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