Chidambaram suspects sabotage behind train accident

New Delhi, May 28 (IANS) Home Minister P. Chidambaram Friday said he suspected sabotage behind the derailment of a Howrah-Mumbai train in West Bengal’s West Midnapore district though it was unclear whether explosives were used.

‘It appears to be a case of sabotage where a portion of the railway track was removed. Whether explosives were used is not yet clear,’ the minister said in an statement about the accident that killed at least 65 people and injured over 200.

The statement, however, did not directly blame Maoist guerrillas.

‘I am deeply saddened by the tragedy that struck the Howrah-Kurla-Jnaneswari Express train in West Midnapore district,’ said Chidambaram. ‘I convey my sincere and heartfelt condolences to the families of the deceased.

‘Every effort is being made to rush them to hospitals for medical treatment. Helicopters have been pressed into service,’ he said.

Chidambaram added that his ministry had ‘deployed four teams of National Disaster Response Force to assist in the rescue and relief operations. A total of 132 personnel with necessary equipment have reached the site of the tragedy and are assisting the government and railway authorities’.