Passenger train derails in Assam, militant hand suspected (Lead)

October 27th, 2010 - 11:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Silchar (Assam), Oct 27 (IANS) Four coaches of passenger train Barak Valley Express were derailed Wednesday after suspected militants triggered a blast on a railway track in southern Assam, officials said. No casualties were reported.

“Silchar-bound Barak Valley Express on the Lumding-Silchar metre gauge hill section had an accident apparently because of an explosion on the track in southern Assam,” Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) spokesman Subrata Hajong told reporters.

The incident took place between Lower Halflong and Bagetar stations, about 300-km from Assam’s main city Guwahati.

The derailed coaches were one SLR (Brake-cum-luggage van) and three general second class coaches.

Railway rescue and relief teams along with senior railway officials reached the spot. About 88 metres of railway track was damaged due to the accident.

As a result of the mishap, Barak Valley Express coming from Lumding was terminated at the Bagetar station. Passengers of both, UP and Down Barak Valley Express were transshipped at the Bagetar station. Both the trains later started for their respective destination.

Restoration work for speedy normalisation of the affected section of the track was on in full swing, Hajong said.

A senior Assam Police official told reporters that the explosion was set off by suspected militants as an indefinite shutdown by the Dima Halam Daogah (Dilip Nunisa) group (DHD-Nunisa) was on in Assam’s North Cachar Hills district.

The DHD (Dilip Nunisa) group had called for an indefinite district shutdown from Wednesday to protest alleged assault on one of its cadres Oct 23 at Gabao Village.

Shops, markets and business establishments have kept their shutters down, educational institutions remained closed, while vehicles were off the roads due to the shutdown.

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