Monday, 10 March 2014

Train fire: Victims’ identity confirmed

Almost two months after a fire broke out in the Dehradun Express on January 8, killing nine passengers near Dahanu station, the DNA test performed for the second time has confirmed that the unidentified remains of two bodies found in one of the bogies are of Sakina Shabbir R.C. Wala (57) and Zamir Ahmed (60) who were travelling in the bogie and had been missing since then.

Murtuza R.C. Wala, nephew of Ms R.C. Wala, who was travelling on birth number 65 in the S-2 compartment, confirmed the development and said, “We were informed that the DNA has matched and the remains were of my aunt only.” He added, “Her son Ali Asgar is working in Bangkok and is completing the process to come to India to perform her last rites so we would claim her remains after he reaches here.”

Shamshad, son-in-law of the other victim, Zamir Ahmed, said, “It was confirmed with DNA test that the body was his so we claimed the remains and buried it two days ago on Friday.” Though the deceased was a resident of Bijnor, his remains were buried in Mumbai. Shamshad also said that they have received a message asking them to meet some railway officer to complete the procedure for compensation.

The Palghar Government Railway Police (GRP), which was investigating the matter, had last month sent some parts of the remains for a second DNA test as the first test was inconclusive.

The Bandra-Dehradun Express had caught fire minutes after leaving the Dahanu Road station in the early hours of January 8. Nine passengers of the second-class sleeper coaches S-2, S-3 and S-4 died and many others were injured. While most of the passengers were asleep and unaware about the blaze, gateman Jawahar Singh noticed smoke billowing from the bogies and swung into action.

He made sure that the train was stopped minutes after it left the station.

Monday 10 March 2014


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