Shahid Afridi tweets about the unfortunate Amritsar train accident
At least 60 people were killed in the accident.
Updated - Oct 20, 2018 1:20 pm
Former Pakistan cricketer Shahid Afridi has tweeted to express his condolences after a tragic train accident in Amritsar that killed many people. Dussehra celebrations turned deadly in this city in the state of Punjab on Friday evening when a speeding train ran over hundreds of people who were watching Ravana’s effigy going up in flames. Over 60 people were feared dead according to initial estimates with authorities saying that the number of fatalities could rise.
The tragedy took place at the Joda Fatak area where a large crowd had gathered to watch the fireworks customary to the festival. As the firecrackers went off, the organizers of the Dussehra celebration asked people to move back. A large number of people moved towards the railway tracks as per the instructions.
However, at the same time, the Jalandhar-Amritsar DMU was crossing the spot. Police officials said that the revelers could not hear the train approaching because of the loud explosions from the effigy and were run over by the train. Eyewitnesses said the Amritsar-Howrah train had crossed the spot minutes earlier. Had the two trains crossed at the same time, the casualties would have been much higher.
Shahid Afridi took to Twitter to say, “Really tragic incident in India. Condolences with the affected families may Allah give them the strength to overcome the loss. May Allah protect us all.”
Really tragic incident in India. Condolences with the affected families may Allah give them the strength to overcome the loss. May Allah protect us all.
— Shahid Afridi (@SAfridiOfficial) October 19, 2018
The celebrations were being attended by the wife of Punjab cabinet minister and former Indian cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu. She had however left before the mishap. “I had left the spot only moments earlier after seeing that all arrangements were in place,” she told reporters after the tragedy. “I rushed back as soon as I got a call about the accident.”
Authorities have ordered an inquiry into the incident and further investigations into the tragedy will be carried out.