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Collision hits train services on Bangalore-Chennai route

Train services to Chennai from Bangalore, Mysore and Hubli in Karnataka will remain disrupted till Wednesday evening as restoration work was in progress on the route on which a collision took place near the Tamil Nadu capital.

"We have cancelled a couple of passenger trains and re-scheduled express and mail trains towards Chennai from Bangalore, Mysore and Hubli during the day as restoration of tracks is in progress," a South Western Railway spokesman told IANS here.

About 10 people died and 86 passengers were injured late Tuesday when the Chennai Beach-Vellore electric multiple unit (EMU) suburban train hit the Arakkonam-Katpadi passenger train near the Chitheri station.

The collision derailed five coaches of the passenger train and three of the EMU near Arakkonam, 85 km from Chennai. Heavy rain and poor visibility hampered rescue and relief work till the wee hours.

"The Bangalore-Chennai day express train has been cancelled while the Lalbagh and Brindavan intercity superfast to Chennai and Sanghamitra Express to Varanasi via Chennai have been re-scheduled to depart late afternoon as we expect the tracks to be restored by evening," the spokesman said.

Besides a dozen trains to Chennai from Bangalore and Mysore every day, the railways operate about 10 mail and express trains daily towards northern and eastern regions through the affected route, which is electrified between the two state capitals.

Hundreds of passengers were stranded and caught unawares about the train accident and disruption of services towards Chennai, about 360 km from this tech hub.

Several day passengers to Chennai and onward destinations and local commuters for suburban stations en-route were seen rushing to the nearby inter-state bus terminus from the city railway station to board state-run transport and private buses.

The Karnataka State Transport Corporation (KSRTC) will run additional buses to Bangarpet, Kolar, Katpadi, Arakkonam and Chennai during the day to meet the sudden rush from train passengers.

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