The deadly accident involving two passenger trains and a goods train in Odisha's Balasore district killed at least 288 people and injured more than 1100, in one of the worst railway tragedies in the country
Kapil Sibal. File photo
On Sunday, Rajya Sabha MP Kapil Sibal lashed out at the government over the railway tragedy in Odisha and said one minister cannot deal with large ministries such as Railways as well as Communications, Electronics, and Information Technology, as was being done by Ashwini Vaishnaw, PTI reported.
The deadly accident involving two passenger trains and a goods train in Odisha's Balasore district killed at least 288 people and injured more than 1100, in one of the worst railway tragedies in the country.
"Ashwini Vaishnaw, Minister for IT and Electronics, Minister for Railways. No Railway Budget. No Accountability. One minister cannot deal with such large ministries. Bullet Trains. Vande Bharat. Serve the extraordinary, let down the ordinary! Recipe for disaster !" Kapil Sibal said in a Tweet.
"Tragedies Total derailments; 257(2017-18); 526 (2018-19) ; 399 (2019-20)...Reasons (CAG): 1)Maintenance of track (167); 2)Deviation of track parameters(149); 3)Bad driving(144). For the Rs.1 lakh cr. allocated 2017-22) for safety, Railways failed to deposit even Rs. 5000 cr each year!" he claimed in another tweet.
Sibal, who was a Union minister during the UPA 1 and UPA 2 governments, quit the Congress in May last year and was elected to the Rajya Sabha as an Independent member with the Samajwadi Party's support.
He recently floated the non-electoral platform 'Insaaf', aimed at fighting injustice.
Meanwhile, two days after the accident, most railway tracks have been cleared of wrecked railway coaches overnight by a team of bulldozers and cranes so that railway services on the main trunk line connecting eastern and southern India can be restored, railway officials said on Sunday.
Work on repairing tracks and overhead electric cables which had snapped is also going on, said officials.
Union Ministers Ashwini Vaishnaw and Dharmendra Pradhan who have camped here visited the railway accident site in the early hours of the morning.
"Restoration work is going on at a fast pace," PTI quoted Vaishnaw as saying. Pradhan added that "rescue work is over ¿ we are working with the local administration to send people affected back home."
He also said that the big challenge is to restore tracks so that the railway link between two important wings of the country can start functioning. "By Tuesday we should be able to do it," the minister said.
(With inputs from PTI)