60 people killed, 100 others injured as train mows down crowd


Sixty people have been killed and 100 injured after a train ran into a crowd near Amritsar in India’s northern Punjab State.
The victims which include children were standing on the railway tracks watching celebrations for Dusshera, a Hindu festival marking the triumph of good over evil.
They did not hear the train approach as they watched a firecracker-filled effigy of the demon king Ravana burn.
Spectators were watching the effigy burn, and a fireworks display, when they were asked by organisers to move back – towards the railway tracks a short distance away, reports say.
According to eyewitnesses, many were busy filming the festivities on their phones, and did not notice the train approaching at high speed.
Police say the noise of the firecrackers and the crowd may have stopped victims from hearing the train.
The train that hit the crowds was travelling from Jalandhar to Amritsar.
Chief Minister, Amarinder Singh, Punjab, described the incident as “absolutely tragic”, and wrote in a tweet that local authorities were being “mobilised”.
He said that victims would be given medical aid for free.
“We will do everything possible to assist the injured,” he said, adding that the district administration has been directed to leave no stone unturned to ensure the best possible treatment for them”, he said.
A state of mourning has been declared – offices and schools in Punjab will be closed on Saturday.


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