Jammu Rajdhani Exp derails in Delhi, no casualties
The series of accidents in Indian Railways continues as a coach of the Jammu Tawi-New Delhi Rajdhani Express derailed in the national capital. There was no casualty though. The mishap happened at around 6am when the train was entering the platform at New Delhi Railway Station. Ironically, today is when the high-speed bullet train project is being launched in Gujarat.
In less than a month, at least six derailments
A series of derailments began on August 19 when the Utkal Express went off the tracks in Khatauli (UP), killing 23. On August 23, the Kaifiyat Express derailed in Auraiya (UP). Seventy were injured. On September 7, the Shaktipunj Express derailed in Sonbhadra (UP). Low speed prevented casualties. The same day, a Rajdhani Express derailed in Delhi and a goods train derailed in Maharashtra.
Has a new railway minister changed things yet?
After back-to-back accidents, former railway minister Suresh Prabhu was removed from his post. Union Minister Piyush Goyal replaced him during a cabinet reshuffle. He faced a tough task at hand. The basic structure of the railways needs reform, while PM Narendra Modi has also promised high-speed trains. But in the 10 days he has been railway minister, there have been at least four derailments.
Are we allocating resources wisely?
On one hand, the number of accidents in Indian Railways due to unmanned crossings, defective tracks etc even at current low speeds are high. On the other, there's the ambitious bullet train project. It will bring many advantages and might revolutionize train travel in India. But we need to ask what's more important: safety for all or luxury for some.