At least 28 dead, 300 hurt in India rail crash: officials

NEW DELHI   -    At least 28 people have died, more than 300 were injured and many are feared trapped in a multi­ple train collision in east­ern India’s Odisha state, a medical officer said Friday.

Witnesses and officials told local media that the Coromandel Express pas­senger train and a goods train collided near Balas­ore, about 200 kilometres (125 miles) from the state capital Bhubaneswar.

A second passenger train was also involved in the incident, according to Odisha’s chief secretary Pradeep Jena, but the order of events was still unclear. The Press Trust of India reported that around 50 people were “feared dead,” citing unnamed officials. Many passengers were be­lieved to be trapped un­der rail cars at the scene. “At least 28 people are con­firmed dead and around 300 are injured,” Anil Ku­mar Mohanty, a medical of­ficer in Balasore, told AFP. “We have rushed doctors and medical staff to the ac­cident site,” he added.

A police official in Balas­ore told AFP that many of the injured were in a seri­ous condition, but the de­tails were “not too clear yet as teams are on the ground and everyone is busy in the rescue work”. Local news channels said that the num­ber of injured passengers had surpassed 300. SK Pan­da, a spokesperson in Jena’s office in Odisha state, told AFP that the casualties as well as the situation on the ground was “not yet clear as it is a heavy accident”.

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