Update at 12:52 pm: This is not a time for making allegations against people. This is a time to stand together and help the victims. Our administration has been handling the situation all night, my administration has been handling the situation all night from Chandigarh. To feel every VIP should land up here, forgetting about the tragedy and looking at VIP security is not right. We came as fast as I could come. Governor came here last night. Other ministers arrived fast. Everyone has done their best, the entire cabinet of Punjab is here. They've all come to assist in this: Capt Amarinder Singh
Update at 12:49 pm: It's a terrible tragedy we all accept it. He (Sidhu) may have said it in a different way, but everyone, including him is deeply sad by it. We are putting an enquiry, I cannot pre-judge an enquiry. It will decide who is the culprit, who is not, who got permission, who gave permission. I say four weeks to reach conclusion: Capt Amarinder Singh
Update at 12:47 pm: We have a ministerial committee, 3 ministers will stay here and look after the situation. We have identified most of the bodies except for 9. It's necessary for enquiry for the reason behind the mishap. We are announcing magestirial enquiry under commissioner and in four weeks there will be a report. GoI and Railways are doing their own enquiry, we will do our own. We have established a helpline number also: Capt Amarinder Singh
Update at 12:45 pm: 59 people have been killed during this accident and 70 have been injured. It was a very tragic incident which happened last night. The hospital, the staff and the volunteers have done their very best to assist. And I thank all of them. We have called for a one-day state mourning: Capt Amarinder Singh
Update at 12:44 pm: Firstly I want to say that I was on my trip to Israel. I was at airport when this incident happened. I canceled my trip and came to Amritsar straight away: Capt Amarinder Singh, Punjab CM
Update at 11:59 am: Capt Amarinder Singh, Punjab Cm, visits hospital and meets the injured victims in the company of Navjot Singh Sidhu and other officials
Update at 11:43 am: Officials of France, Israel, UK and Canada, including Canadian PM Justin Trudeau offer their condolences to the victims who lost their lives in the horrific train accident in Amritsar.
Update at 11:39 am: Russian President Vladimir Putin has offered his condolences to the people who lost their lives in the tragic Amritsar Train accident. Here's his full statement:
"I offer my deepest sympathies over tragic consequences of an accident on railways in the Punjab state. I ask to convey my words of sympathy and support to families and friends of the killed people and to wish the soonest recovery to those injured," the message says.
Update at 11:28 am: Drivers are instructed to slow down only where there is speed restriction, they are told when to blow the horn. There was a curve how could he see where the effigy was?: Manoj Sinha, MoS Railways
Update at 11:24 am: I don't think railway has to do much regarding this incident. They should not organise events near the tracks. I don't want to politicise the matter. We had not given permission for this. Drivers are instructed to slow down only where there is speed restriction, they are told when to blow the horn: Mos Railways Manoj Sinha
Update at 11:15 am: 10 Mail Express trains and 27 passenger trains canceled, 16 trains diverted, 10 Mail Express trains & 2 passenger trains short terminated and 6 Mail Express trains short originated in the wake of the tragic train accident.
Update at 11:05 am: Punjab CM Amarinder Singh arrives in Punjab a day after the tragic train incident.
Update at 10:24 am: Its a criminal intimidation. High level judicial enquiry should be done. The should provide maximum monetary help. The state govt has a double face. They don't have money for every good thing. But for buying vehicles and wasting money in lavish things, they have all the money in the world: Daljeet Cheema (SAD)
Update at 9:53 am: Punjab minister and Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu has accepted there was 'negligence', though, denied any intentional role behind the tragic train accident.
Update at 9:41 am: GRP registers FIR in the rail accident case. Case registered under section 304 A, 304, 337, 338 of the IPC. Case registered against unknown persons
Update at 9:03 am: Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh leaves from Delhi for Amritsar.
Update at 8:53 am: 8 trains have been canceled, 5 trains diverted, 10 trains short-terminated and 5 trains short-originated on Saturday following the train accident between Amritsar & Manawala on Friday
Update at 8:39 am: This is not a time to point fingers on anyone, not a point to play politics. People raised questions on my wife but I would like to say we can't stop people to raise questions but I am urging don't politicise it. That incident was not motivated, there was a negligence: Navjot Singh Sidhu
Update at 8:37 am: These are my people. I am with them. I accept that there was negligence, but that was not motivated: Navjot Singh Sidhu
Update at 8:35 am: We have to believe that was an accident. This is a negligence but nobody did this intentionally. Nobody should do politics on this right now: Navjot Singh Sidhu
Update at 8:32 am: It was a tragic incident. I am upset with this incident. I had a word with victim family. We are with the family: Navjot Singh Sidhu
Update at 8:08 am: Navjot Singh Sidhu maintains staunch silence on the tragic train accident when confronted by the reporters.
Update at 7:30 am: Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) are pinning the blame on Navjot Singh Sidhu and his wife Navjot Kaur Sidhu for the tragic accident, claiming had the latter come on time as the chief guest, it could have been avoided.
Update at 7:00 am: Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu reaches Civil Hospital in Amritsar.
Update at 6:15 am: UN General Secretary Antonio Guterres offers his condolences to those who have lost their life in Amritsar.
Update at 11.10 pm: Around 58 people have died so far: Amritsar Police Commissioner SS Srivastava on Amritsar train accident
Update at 11.05 pm: Approximately more than 60 injured people including children have received medical treatment till now. Most people have suffered orthopedic injuries, abrasions, head trauma and eye injuries: Dr Sandeep, Emergency Medical Officer, Civil Hospital, Amritsar
Update at 10.53 pm: MP from Amritsar, Gurjeet Singh Aujla who is present at Civil Hospital, says, "probe will be conducted into the incident, action will be taken against those found guilty, even if it is Navjot Kaur Sidhu."
Update at 10.51 pm: Special train will be leaving from New Delhi to Amritsar for all senior officials of the Railways to the accident spot
Update at 10.33 pm: There are not enough words to mourn the Amritsar train tragedy that claims so many innocent lives. My deepest condolences to the families who lost their loved ones. The incident needs to be probed as it casts serious question on administration: Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal
Update at 10.31 pm: Indo-Tibetan Border Police and Punjab police personnel present at the site of the accident; Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has ordered an inquiry into accident.
Update at 10.20 pm: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved Rs 2 lakh for the family of the dead and Rs 50,000 for the injured.
Update at 10.19 pm: 50 dead and 72 seriously injured in Amritsar train accident: Official figures given to Punjab government
Update at 10.18 pm: Punjab CM has set up a Crisis Management Group to monitor the relief and rehabilitation efforts. The Group is led by Health Min Brahm Mohindra, with Revenue Minister Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria&Technical Edu Min Charanjit S Channi as members.The team has rushed to the accident site
Update at 10.18 pm: Medical teams are rushing to the spot. I am also leaving for the site of the accident. As per initial information, people present near the railway track couldn't hear the sound of the approaching train due bursting crackers: MoS Railways Manoj Sinha on Amritsar train accident
Update at 10.17 pm: Whoever gave the permission to organise the event on the location is responsible for this incident: Parkash Singh Badal, Former Punjab CM
Update at 10.12 pm: "The state will remain in mourning tomorrow in view of #Amritsar train mishap. All offices & educational institutions will remain closed," announces Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh.
Update at 10.11 pm: Have set up Crisis Management Group under @BrahmMohindra to monitor relief & rehabilitation efforts in Amritsar. Won’t spare any efforts on part of govt to tackle the crisis.
Update at 10.08 pm: Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has ordered an inquiry into the train accident in Amritsar which has claimed 50 lives and has left 30-35 people are injured
Update at 10.08 pm: How can you give permission for hundreds of people to aggregate next to a railway track? Then there was no arrangement, no barricades were put up to avoid untoward incident: Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal
Update at 10.06 pm: People who want to donate blood should arrive at the Civil Hospital and Guru Nanak Hospital in #Amritsar: Public Relations department, Punjab Government
Update at 10.00 pm: An unfortunate tragedy has taken place. My heart goes out to all those who have lost their lives & injured in this incident which from the initial reports appears to be a tragedy that could have been avoided: Arun Jaitley
Update at 9.57 pm:
Update at 9.52 pm: "May God give strength to the bereaved and injured. Railways is proving all possible assistance at the site. I have cancelled all engagemnts in USA and immediately returning back to India," says Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal.
Update at 9.49 pm: Army authorities in Amritsar have offered to provide any help required to the district administration in wake of the train mishap in Punjab
Update at 9.48 pm: Telephone numbers at Manawala station:
Rly - 73325
BSNL - 0183-2440024
Telephone Nos at Power Cabin ASR
Rly - 72820
BSNL - 0183-2402927
Two FCT nos are provided at gate
Vijay sahota,SSE /Tele
Update at 9.46 pm: "Saddened to hear the unfortunate death of innocent devotees watching Dussehra at Joda Gate in #Amritsar near a railway track, when they were hit by a speeding train," Union Minister Jitendra Singh.
Update at 9.40 pm: I have been informed that the event was organised near the Railway tracks, and the people did not hear the train coming. The local authorities had not informed the Railways about the event: Manoj Sinha- MoS, Indian Railways
Update at 9.36 pm: This mishap could have been avoided. The PM himself is constantly monitoring the situation: Arun Jaitley
Update at 9.36 pm: Amidst the noise of firecrackers people ran on the tracks. Railway officials are on the spot. Northern Rail GM is reaching the spot. The info I got half an hour ago is 30-35 people have been injured, which will rise now: CPRO, Northern Railway
Update at 9.31 pm: I blame Navjot Singh Sidhu for the accident as he is the Local Body Minister. He should have known that permission to celebrate Dussehra so close to the railway tracks can't be given: Bikram Singh Majithia, Akali Dal
Update at 9.29 pm: Right now we are focusing on rescue and relief: Smita Sharma-ADG PR, Indian Railways on Amritsar train accident
Update at 9.26 pm: "Saddened and distressed by death of innocent people celebrating Dussehra festival in Amritsar. The accident by train is tragic. May God give strength to all," tweets Arun Jaitley
Update at 9.23 pm: "Extremely pained to hear about the the terrible accident on railway tracks in Amritsar, Punjab in which so many people have lost lives. My heart goes out to their family members in this hour of grief. Hope n pray those injured recover soon," tweets Ashok Gehlot, General Secretary AICC
Update at 9.21 pm: It is an unfortunate accident. We don't have any confirmation on the numbers who have been impacted by the incident. Accident relief train has reached the site. Minister of State for Railways is also rushing to the spot: Smita Sharma, ADG PR, Indian Railways
Update at 9.21 pm: Railway regional office says "No information was given and no support was asked from them"
Update at 9.20 pm: Punjab Governor V.P.Singh Badnore expressed profound grief over the tragic incident in Amritsar. Issuing a statement, the Governor termed it as the most tragic and unfortunate incident. The Governor has also spoken to the DGP and district administration to provide to provide every kind of support and assistance at this hour of tragedy and expressed condolences to the families of the deceased.
Update at 9.15 pm: "Very very sad to learn about the unfortunate rail incident in Amritsar during Dussehra festivities. I have no words to describe my shock and agony. My heart goes out to the family members of the victims. Pray that the injured persons recover very quickly," tweets Mamata Banerjee
Update at 9.15 pm: Ashwani Lohani, Chairman Railway Board is also going with Minister Of State Manoj Sinha
Update at 9.11 pm: A train came in full speed. We rushed everyone to hospital. We will be here the whole night. I left the event 15 mins back and that is when I received a call of this incident.People who are doing politics on this should be ashamed of themselves.The Railways should have slowed down the train. It’s a very big mistake on the part of Railways: Navjot Kaur Sidhu, wife of Punjab Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu.
Update at 9.02 pm: GM, Principal Chief Medical Director, Principal Chief Operating Officer, Chief Safety officer and Chief Commercial Manager have rushed to the accident site.
Update at 9.01 pm: Minister Of State Manoj Sinha is immediately rushing to Amritsar
Update at 8.58 pm: Sub Divisional Magistrate Amritsar I Rajesh Sharma said "50 bodies have been found and at least 50 injured have been admitted to a government hospital. As the effigy was lit and the fireworks went off, a section of the crowd started retreating towards the tracks where a large number of people were already standing to watch the event.
However, two trains arrived from the opposite direction at the same time giving little opportunity to people to escape."
Update at 8.57 pm: "We will do everything possible to assist the injured. Have directed the district administration to leave no stone unturned to ensure the best possible treatment for them," tweets Punjab CM Amarinder Singh.
Update at 8.56 pm: "Shocked and deeply saddened by the tragic train incident that occurred in Amritsar. My heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims. I pray for the injured to recover quickly. Railways is conducting immediate relief and rescue operations," tweets Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal.
Update at 8.52 pm: "I am pained beyond words to learn about the tragic train accident in Amritsar. I have spoken to the local BJP unit and asked our karyakartas to join the rescue operation. My deepest condolences with those who have lost their loved ones. I pray for early recovery of those injured," tweets Amit Shah.
Update at 8.51 pm: "My heart goes out to the bereaved family members who lost their loved once in Amritsar train accident. At this unfortunate event we stand with the family and pray for the departed soul," tweets Harpal Singh Cheema, Leader Of Opposition in Punjab Assembly
Update at 8.50 pm: Exact figure is not known but it is definitely more than 50-60. We are still evacuating people: Amritsar Police Commissioner SS Srivastava on Amritsar train accident.
Update at 8.42 pm: Helpline numbers: 0183-2564485, 0183-2223172
Update at 8.42 pm: "The train accident in Punjab in which over 50 people have died is shocking. I urge the state government & Congress workers to provide immediate relief at the accident site. My condolences to the families of those who have died. I pray that the injured make a speedy recovery," tweets Rahul Gandhi.
Update at 8.41 pm:
Update at 8.40 pm: "Extremely saddened by the train accident in Amritsar. The tragedy is heart-wrenching. My deepest condolences to the families of those who lost their loved ones and I pray that the injured recover quickly. Have asked officials to provide immediate assistance that is required," tweets PM Modi.
Update at 8.36 pm: Injured persons are taken to Civil hospital
Update at 8.36 pm: "Shocked to hear about the tragedy on rail tracks in Amritsar, Punjab. Understand Indian Railways and local authorities are taking steps to help affected people. Heartfelt condolences to bereaved families," tweets President of India Ramnath Kovind
Update at 8.36 pm: The track is guarded, it’s around 70 feet or more away. People ran towards the track to prevent themselves from burns from the effigy burning: Deepak Kumar, CPRO
Update at 8.31 pm: DGP and State Chief Secy both are reaching the spot
Update at 8.30 pm: Dussehra committee is responsible for this. They didn't have permission to organise the event: Akali Dal leader Manjinder Singh Sirsa
Update at 8.29 pm: As per sources, the event was organised without any permission. Navjot Kaur Sidhu was the Chief guest at the event
Update at 8.28 pm: Centre deploys 6 NDRF teams, 8 SDRF teams. Teams to reach the spot
Update at 8.27 pm: Captain Amarinder Singh has deputed Revenue Minister Sukhbinder Sarkaria to immediately reach Amritsar to oversee rescue operations.
Update at 8.25 pm: State government asks for NDRF apart from SDRF.
Update at 8.25 pm: "Rushing to Amritsar to personally supervise relief & rescue in tragic rail accident on Dussehra in Amritsar. My govt will give Rs 5 lakh to kin of each deceased & free treatment to injured in govt & pvt hospitals. District authorities have been mobilised on war footing," tweets Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh.
Update at 8.25 pm: "Shocked to hear of tragic rail accident in Amritsar. Have asked all govt & pvt hospitals to stay open to help in this hour of grief. District authorities have been directed to take up relief and rescue operations on a war footing," tweets Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh.
Update at 8.24 pm: "I spoke to Home Secretary of Punjab and DGP of the state regarding the train accident in Amritsar. They are rushing to the spot. Centre is ready to provide all possible assistance to the state at this hour of grief," tweets Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.
Update at 8.23 pm: In the wake of the tragic rail accident, the Punjab Chief Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh has directed Home Secretary, Health Secretary and ADGP Law and Order to immediately rush to Amritsar. The Punjab CM would fly to Amritsar on Saturday to assess the situation first hand.
Update at 8.21pm: Incident took place 200 metres from where Dussehra celebrations were taking place: Gagan Bedi, PTC news.
Update at 8.20pm: Punjab: At gate no. 27 between Amritsar & Manawala. As Dussehra celebration was taking place some incident had occurred and people started rushing towards closed gate number 27 while a DMU train number 74943 was passing the closed gate: CPRO Northern Railway
Update at 8.18 pm: Railways Minister Piyush Goyal speaks to Chairman Railway Board, seeks details.
Update at 8.18 pm: "Extremely sad news coming about a major train accident near Amritsar. I appeal to all our volunteers in the area to help authorities in the relief work and provide whatever help we can in this moment of crisis," tweets Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal.
Update at 8.16 pm: Punjab government sending two ministers to the spot
Update at 8.15 pm: Local people are blame authorities for not putting up barricades to avoid casualties
Update at 8.15 pm: One of the eyewitness says, "The administration and the Dussehra committee are at fault, they should have raised an alarm when the train was approaching, they should have made sure that the train halts or slows down."
Update at 8.13 pm: Railway ministry has taken stock of the situation and has sought details
Update at 8.10 pm: As per an account, the mishap happened after the Dussehra fire started to spreading and people started running for safety trampling each other. That is when they ran towards an onrushing train.
Update at 8.03 pm: Police says, "There are more than 50 casualties. We are evacuating people, injured taken to the hospital", on accident in which several are feared dead in Choura Bazar near Amritsar.
Update at 8.02 pm:
Update at 7.59 pm: Deepak Kumar, CPRO confirms the incident and informed that the medical team have reached the spot.
Update at 7.54 pm: At least 30 feared dead
Update at 7.53 pm: Accident believed to have taken place at around 6.30 pm at Joda Phatak near Amritsar
Several people are feared dead and many injured in a massive train mishap near Punjab's Amritsar. As per initial information, the train ran over people watching Dussehra celebration. Local administration and fire brigade are rushing to the spot and a rescue operation is underway.
It all happened after the Dussehra fire started spreading and people started running helter-skelter for safety trampling each other. That is when they ran towards an onrushing train.
According to report detached arms, legs of bodies were spread out near the railway track. The Dussehra festival was taking place at Jod Phatak.
Raj Kumar Verka of the Congress said that it was a very unfortunate incident and that he was on his way to the spot to ascertain the situation. Navjot Kaur Sidhu, wife of Navjot Sidhu, the local bodies minister was the chief guest there when the incident took place.