Titabor: A three-year-old elephant calf died on the spot while over hundreds of passengers of the Guwahati-Ledo Intercity Express had a miraculous escape when the train they were travelling in hit the animal before derailing near Titabar in the Jorhat district of Assam.
As per Northeast Frontier (NF) Railway sources, the incident happened around 4.30 on Wednesday morning somewhere between the stations of Titabar and Mariani in Jorhat district.
“Senior officials of Tinsukia division reached the site immediately along with relief the train. The section was ultimately restored at 7.45 am. The stranded train left the site at 8.06 am after the coach was re-railed,” said NF Railway sources.
A departmental inquiry has been ordered into the incident.
“There has been a manifold increase in the incidents of elephant crossings during the recent past and trains are constantly slowed down whenever any information of herd movement is shared by the forest department. It is only because of the close coordination between field-level officials of both the forest and railway departments that as many as 200 imminent dashing incidents have been prevented this year alone. However, the incidents have to be seen in the light of a recent spurt of man-animal conflicts,” said a statement issued by the NF Railway after the incident.
However, a section of forest officials have termed the incident as a result of the negligence of the railway officials.
“Necessary information about the movement of the herd of elephants in the area was given to the railway officials. But no concrete precautionary measures were seemed to be taken by the railways. Today’s accident was the outcome of this negligence,” said a forest official.
The elephant calf was later cremated in presence of a large section of villagers after conducting the post-mortem.