Bhubaneswar: At least 40 passengers aboard the Puri-Howrah Shatabdi Express were allegedly taken ill after taking breakfast served by the Railways’ catering wing, IRCTC, on Wednesday morning.
The affected passengers were travelling in coach numbers C1 and C2.
According to railway sources, the passengers were bread omelet in their breakfast at around 8.30 am soon after the train left Bhubaneswar station.
The Puri-Howrah Shatabdi Express (train number 12278) left Puri at 5.45 am.
The matter came to light when four passengers including a child in C2 coach complained of vomiting and uneasiness at Belda station in West Bengal.
Upon receiving complaint, a doctor was rushed to the coach to treat the passengers. When the train reached Kharagpur station, 14 people were taken to Kharagpur railway hospital for checkup and they were released after medical treatment. Later 15 others reportedly complained of similar health problems, railway sources said.
“We were served omelette and bread after the train left Bhubaneswar. After a few minutes, we started having abdominal pain followed by vomiting,” said Kakali Sengupta, a passenger and resident of Siliguri in north Bengal.
Upset over the matter, some passengers agitated against the IRCTC alleging serving unhygienic food during the journey. The train was detained at the Kharagpur station for around one and half hours.
The train was allowed to leave the station after a medical team found no other passengers were found sick, a railway official added.
Meanwhile, an IRCTC official said the exact cause behind the alleged food posioning will be known only after investigation adding the food samples have been sent for testing.
“Only 15 persons were admitted to Kharagpur railway hospital for treatment. We have served breakfast to more than 500 passengers, but a few among them complained of illness. We can know the exact reason behind the food poisoning after getting test report,” Debashish Chandra, Head of IRCTC’s Eastern Zone.