| Firemen douse the fire billowing from the Magadh Express at Chausa railway station near Buxar on Monday. Picture by Alok Kumar |
A first class AC coach (H-1) of the 2402 New Delhi-Patna Magadh Express caught fire near Buxar station, 100km west of Patna, around 11.25am on Monday.
The fire struck between Gahmar and Chausa stations. It took two fire tenders two-and-a-half hours to douse the fire. Danapur division railway manager of East Central Railway (ECR) N.K. Gupta told The Telegraph: “The reason behind the fire is not yet known. A forensic team from Patna has rushed to the spot to investigate.”
He further said: “The good thing is there were no casualties and all passengers in the coach are safe.”
ECR chief public relation officer Amitabh Prabhakar said: “As soon as the train left Dildar Nagar station at 11.02am and crossed Karmnasha overbridge, smoke began emanating from a coach. All seven passengers, including a vendor, pulled the emergency chain and the train stopped. All five AC bogies, including the one that had caught fire, were detached and taken to Chausa station where firemen doused the flames.”
Driver of the train, P. Nath, who decided to isolate the AC bogies, said: “It was important to detach the bogies, otherwise the flame could have spread to other bogies.”
Former Sikandarpur MLA Bhagwan Pathak who was in the compartment that caught fire said: “A few passengers came and told me smoke was emanating from the compartment. They then went and informed the guard.”
Buxar superintendent of police (SP) Babulal has reached the spot to look after the rescue operations.
The train left Chausa station around 3:30pm and reached Patna Junction around 6.20pm, almost seven hours behind schedule. The incident affected running of at least 20 trains.