16 killed, 36 injured in India train crash

At least 16 people were killed and dozens were injured when a passenger train derailed Monday in central India, the railroad minister said.

The train was traveling from the north Indian city of Varanasi to the central city of Gwalior when it derailed near the town of Datia, Railway Minister Laloo Prasad Yadav told reporters.

Six coaches plus the train's engine derailed, killing at least 16 people, Yadav said.

At least 36 people were injured and several others were trapped in badly mangled coaches, said Caroline Khongwar, Datia's top official.

Datia is 330 kilometers (200 miles) south of New Delhi.

Yadav said the derailment apparently was caused because the train was speeding.

Preliminary reports said the train was running at 90 kilometers per hour (55 miles per hour) as it approached the Datia station, Yadav said. The speed limit along that stretch is 15 kph (9 mph), reports the AP.

According to Forbes, the train was travelling from Varanasi in neighboring Uttar Pradesh state to Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh.

Vinod Shukla, a train passenger travelling to Gwalior who was sleeping when the train crashed, said scores had been injured.

"There were a lot of people injured, I think more than 100 people injured in the accident," Shukla said by telephone from the site.

Railways minister Yadav announced cash pay-outs for families of the dead and said the injured will be treated free of charge.


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