Cong MLA among 6 dead in Andhra train crash

 

Cong MLA among 6 dead in Andhra train crash
The mangled remains of a coach of the Bengaluru-Nanded express train which rammed into a lorry near Madakasira Railway Gate in Anantapur district on Monday.

Truck loaded with granite boulders rams into train.

By P.S. Jayaram

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Published: Tue 25 Aug 2015, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Tue 25 Aug 2015, 9:29 AM

Hyderabad: In what is being described as a freak accident, six persons were killed including a Karnataka legislator, and at least 30 others were injured when a truck loaded with granite boulders rammed into the Bengaluru-Nanded express train near Madakasira village in Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh in the wee hours of Monday.
The accident occurred at around 2.30am when the brakes of the granite-laden truck failed, and the vehicle rammed into the train at a railway level-crossing leading to the derailment of three air-conditioned coaches, Anantapur Superintendent of Police S V Rajasekhar Babu, who along with District Collector Kona Sasidhar rushed to the spot, said.
While six persons including the truck's cleaner, who is yet to be identified, were pronounced dead by doctors at the Hindupur government general hospital, more than 30 people, mostly from the S1 coach were injured, five of them seriously.
The seriously injured have been rushed to Bengaluru for treatment, the official said, adding that the truck driver, who fell unconscious after jumping out of the truck moments before the impact, was being questioned now.
Congress MLA Venkatesh Naik, who represents Devadurga Assembly constituency in the Karnataka State Assembly, was among the dead. He was on his way back to the constituency in Raichur district. The 79-year-old Naik is a four time legislator from Devadurga.
This is the third major accident to occur in Anantaput district in the past three years, and the second serious accident involving the Bengaluru-Nanded Express in the last two years.
In December 2013, a fire broke out in the Nanded Express at Kothacheruvu near Puttaparthi at around 3 am killing 26 people who were travelling in an AC three-tier coach. In May 2012, the Nanded Express had a narrow escape in the wee hours in Anantapur district when the Hampi Express, which crosses Penukonda at a similar time as the Nanded train, jumped a signal and crashed into a stationary goods train at Penukonda station at around 3am.
The crash resulted in the death of 25 people on board the Hampi Express. Railway investigations of the 2012 Hampi Express crash had found that the Hampi Express and the Nanded Express were scheduled to cross Penakonda at the same time around 3 am with the Nanded Express going first on the platform line followed by the Hampi Express. The loco-pilot of the Hampi Express despite having a stop signal moved towards the Penakonda station and took line 2 where a goods train had been parked resulting in the crash.
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