A high-level inquiry by Commission of Railway Safety (CRS) has found “wrong signalling” to be the main reason for the accident involving three trains in Balasore
The site where Coromandel and Bengaluru-Howrah Express trains derailed, in Balasore district of Odisha. File pic/PTI
The Congress alleged on Tuesday that the Narendra Modi government has “thoroughly compromised” on basic issues of railway safety. A high-level inquiry by Commission of Railway Safety (CRS) has found “wrong signalling” to be the main reason for the accident involving three trains in Balasore. It flagged “lapses at multiple levels” in the signalling and telecommunication (S&T) department, but indicated that the tragedy could have been averted if past red flags were reported.
Reacting to the report, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said, “This is what we have been saying all along. In the craze for inaugurating Vande Bharat trains, fixating on bullet trains and tinkering with specialised cadres, the Modi government has thoroughly compromised on basic issues of railway safety that don’t make for photo-ops and headlines.” “Clearly, the Balasore tragedy was human error at the root of which is management failure, which includes the political leadership,” he tweeted.
Congress spokesperson Supriya Shrinate said, “We would like to appeal that do not get into this business of hot food and new Vande Bharats. First ensure the safety of those travelling by train. It is the responsibility of the government to ensure that people reach their destinations safely and not just keep flagging off trains.”
“All the lies of the government have fallen flat through this report,” she added. Congress MP Manickam Tagore wondered how Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw could still hold on to his position when his “inaction killed hundreds of passengers who believed they won’t die before reaching home”. The TMC accused the Centre of “prioritising public relations over passenger safety” and disregarding concerns raised by the Opposition.
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