Australian among 7 dead in Jharkhand train fire

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Giridih (Jharkhand): As per reports, at least seven people have been killed when a fire ripped through two coaches of the Howrah-Dehradun Express in the Indian state of Jharkhand. The victims, including children, were charred to death as the train coaches caught fire in Giridih district early Tuesday morning.

“Seven persons, including two children, were charred to death after fire broke out in an AC coach and then spread to another AC coach,” Railway Protection Force Divisional Commandant Sashi Kumar said.

Sashi Kumar said that the fire broke out around 3 AM in B-1 AC coach and then spread to B-2 AC coach. The blaze was spotted between Gomo and Nimiaghat railway stations.

It has been learnt that four Australian female researchers were also travelling in the train to the Buddhist holy city of Bodh Gaya.

One died in the fire and others were being treated for injuries, a railway official said.

A railway medical team and Dhanbad DRM have reached the site. Catering arrangements have been made to assist the stranded passengers.

Railway officials are yet to understand what caused the fire. An inquiry has been ordered into the incident by Commissioner Railway Safety (CRS).

The charred coaches have been detached from the train, which left Howrah station last night. Train operations on the route have been restored, officials said.

According to Senior Divisional Commercial Manager (Dhanbad Division), Dayanand, the railway inspection team scanned the two coaches and found seven bodies.

“We have searched both the bogies and found seven bodies,” he said. “We are examining the coaches to determine the cause behind the fire. We are also speaking to train passengers.”