Child killed as explosion derails Shalimar Express near Karachi
05 February, 2014
KARACHI: An explosion on a railway track just outside the city derailed at least 10 bogeys of the Shalimar Night Coach Express on Tuesday evening, leaving a child dead and at least 30 people injured, a private TV channel reported.
Adnan, a passenger, said the train was on it was to Lahore from Karachi when it derailed after a power explosion around 10 kilometres from Ghagar Phatak.
He added that rescue workers were busy saving people trapped in the bogeys.
The channel reported that at least 30 people had been moved to hospital and some of them were in critical condition. It reported that the nearest railway station was Dhabeji, at least 25 kilometres from the site of the blast. Passengers are stranded in a desolated stretch of the jungle, it said.
Railways DS Maqsoodul Nabi told the channel that rescue services had reached the site and relief trains had also been dispatched. He added that arrangements are also being made to move the stranded passengers to their destinations. Cranes have also been dispatched to the site to clear the track, he added.
According to a preliminary report of the Bomb Disposal Squad, two to three kilogrammes of explosive material had been planted along the track.
Talking to another TV channel, witnesses and train passengers said that the blast was "very powerful". They also slammed the delay in rescue and relief operation.
According to railway authorities, "only four" bogies were derailed due to the explosion.
Soon after the explosion, all trains were grounded and the track was closed until further notice. Security in Lahore was also put on alert following the Karachi incident and an attack in Peshawar.
According to sources in Pakistan Railways, rescue teams had reached the site of blast but they were facing difficulties in rescue operation due to darkness at the site of the incident. Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique has directed the authorities concerned to make all-out efforts to rescue victims.