BARIELLY: Eight coaches of the Lucknow-bound Meerut intercity Rajya Rani Express derailed between Mundhapande and Rampur at 8:15 on Saturday morning.
Top railways officials including divisional rail magistrate (DRM) Moradabad Pramod Kumar rushed to the spot.
Personnel of Railway Police Force (RPF) and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) spearheaded rescue and relief operations in tandem with several medical units which were pressed into action.
According to sources, 13 people were injured while one received serious injuries. Apart from passengers with minor injuries who received first aid at the accident site, all the injured were rushed to the district hospital in Rampur.
Operations on the Delhi-Lucknow route were severely hit as dozens of trains were indefinitely delayed and several stood cancelled, railway officials in Bareilly told TOI. The railway officials, however, claimed that traffic on the ‘up’ route was restored by 9:30 am even as relief and rescue operations were underway on the ‘down’ track on which the train had derailed.
Scores of local passengers were stranded at Bareilly junction as trains to Aligarh and other cities were cancelled. Passengers created a ruckus as many demanded refund of their tickets while others ran from pillar to post to enquire about alternate travel arrangements.
A palpable panic gripped passengers in Rampur, Shahjahanpur and other neighbouring stations.
Passengers stranded at the accident site were cleared off after railway authorities arranged for another train with 13 coaches at the accident site and were ferried to their respective destinations while the remaining passengers were made to board buses as a part of alternate conveyance arrangements.
Helpline numbers were also put up at all major stations including Bareilly, Hapur, Meerut City, Delhi, Lucknow and Hazrat Nizamuddin in Delhi to assist people, mostly panic-stricken family members, relatives and acquaintances of passengers who had boarded Rajya Rani Express.
UP CM Yogi Adityanath has announced Rs 50,000 in compensation for those who are seriously injured and Rs 25,000 to each of those who suffered minor injuries. Rail minister Suresh Prabhu also announced an ex-gratia compensation of Rs 50,000 to all injured passengers.