Surat: A tragic incident occurred at the Surat railway station in Gujarat on Saturday when a 40-year-old man lost his life and two others were injured in a stampede that broke out while boarding a special train bound for Bihar for the Chhath festival.
According to Superintendent of Police (Western Railway) Sarjo Kumari, the Tapti Ganga Express train arrived at the Surat railway station around 9 am and was scheduled to depart at 9:15 am. However, as soon as the train halted, a large number of passengers, who had been waiting for hours, rushed to get inside the coaches, resulting in a chaotic situation.
She said that some passengers fell down and got trampled by others, while some fainted and suffered from breathlessness due to the crowd and the heat. She said that the railway police and the staff tried to control the situation and rescue the victims, but it was too late for one of them, who was declared dead on arrival at the hospital.
She said that the deceased has been identified as Rajesh Kumar, a resident of Bihar, who worked as a laborer in Surat. She said that two other passengers, who sustained minor injuries, were admitted to the hospital and are stable. She said that the train departed from Surat at 9:45 am, after a delay of 30 minutes.
She said that the railway authorities had arranged for 10 special trains from Surat to Bihar for the Chhath festival, which is celebrated by the people of Bihar and eastern Uttar Pradesh. She said that the demand for these trains was very high, as many migrant workers wanted to return to their native places to celebrate the festival with their families.
She said that the railway police had made adequate arrangements for security and crowd management at the station, but the passengers did not follow the social distancing norms and the COVID-19 guidelines. She appealed to the passengers to cooperate with the railway staff and maintain discipline and order while boarding the trains. She also expressed her condolences to the family of the deceased and assured them of all possible assistance.