Odisha train tragedy: Culpability of railway staff not been ascertained in FIR, says CBI

New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) said on Tuesday that it has accessed a copy of the FIR lodged in connection with the Balasore train accident that left 275 people dead.

The FIR states that the culpability of specific railway employees has not been ascertained at present, and it will be determined during the course of the investigation.

The FIR was filed after a written complaint was submitted by Ranjeet Nayak, OPS SDRPO, Cuttack.

The FIR states that at 6:55 p.m. on June 2, due to a collision between Train No-12841 Howrah-Channel Coromandal Express and Train No-12864 Yesvantpur-Howrah Express, the carriages of both the trains capsized, causing the death hundreds of passengers.

“The bodies of the deceased and injured persons were shifted to DHH Balasore, DHH Bhadrak, CHC Soro, and other hospitals, while rescue operations are still ongoing. Based on this report, which reveals a cognizable case, an FIR has been filed under Sections 337, 338, 304A, and 34 of the IPC and Sections 153, 154, and 175 of the Railway Act,” the FIR read.

The FIR also mentions that the specific culpability of railway employees has not yet been determined and it will be established during the course of the investigation.

The CBI said that it has registered a case upon the request of the Ministry of Railways and with the consent of the Odisha government.

“The incident relates to the train accident involving the Coromandel Express, Yeshwantpur-Howrah Express, and a goods train at Bahanaga Bazar in Balarore on June 2, 2023,” the CBI said.

A CBI official said that the agency has taken over the investigation previously registered at the Balasore GRPS. A CBI team is already present in Balasore.

On Sunday, the Railway Board had recommended a CBI probe into the Balasore train accident.

Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw had said on Sunday that given the circumstances, situation, and the information received from the administration, “the Railway Board is recommending a CBI probe for further inquiry and investigation”.

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