Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Delang (Puri), Apr 17:
Hundreds of irate locals ransacked the Delang railway station and set fire to a train in Odisha’s Puri district this morning.
The mob, apart from damaging furniture and fixture in the station premises also set fire to a bogey of the Puri-Barbil Express train at the station, reports said.
The incident took place following the death of a local youth who died after falling down from a train at the station last night.
According to sources, the youth, identified as Ratnakar Chhatoi of Guliapada village under Delang police station limits, died after falling from the Puri-Barbil Express train at Delang railway station at about 7.50 PM yesterday.
Following information, Government Railway Police (GRP) rushed to the spot to take the body. However, the locals, after coming to know about the incident, rushed to the spot and did not allow the police to take the body which lay on the railway track till this morning.
In the early morning hours at about 6 AM, the locals of the nearby areas of the railway station came to the railway station and later staged a road block on Delang-Patnaikia road and staged rail roko at the railway station demanding halting of the Puri-Barbil Express train at Delang which they had been demanding since last three years, and compensation to the family of the deceased.
Following information, a senior RPF official of Khordha Road Division rushed to the spot for investigation. Soon after his arrival, the agitating locals requested him to have a discussion with him to which he did not respond.
Enraged at the apathy of the official, the locals went berserk and racked the railway station and later set fire to a bogey of the express train.
As the situation went out of control, a platoon of police force rushed to the spot. Seeing the police, the locals left the area.
Later, eight fire tenders rushed to the spot and brought the fire under control in the bogey.
Train services were disrupted for more than seven hours while vehicular traffic came to a grinding halt for more than four hours following the blockade by the locals.
However, with the arrival of the police force, both the railway and vehicular traffic were restored.
It may be mentioned that the locals of Delang had been demanding the stoppage of Puri-Barbil Express train at Delang railway station since last three years and had staged demonstrations three times earlier.
They had requested the Railway authorities for the stoppage of this express train as several people from Delang used to move in this train to Keonjhar and Barbil areas. However, the Railway authorities are yet to look in to their demands till date.
As informed by the PRO, East Coast Railways (ECoR), there was no loss of life of any passenger after the bogey of the train was set on fire.