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Earphones kill trio on tracks

A local train mowed down three youths on Wednesday morning while they were walking down the tracks, glued to their mobile phones.

A college student and a Class XII boy were among the dead. The accident occurred on the Naihati-Sealdah Main line near Icchapur railway station on the northern fringe of the city.

Witnesses said the three were walking along the tracks and failed to hear the approaching train because they had headphones on their ears.

Government Railway Police (GRP) posted at Naihati station have lodged three cases of unnatural death. The bodies have been sent for autopsy.

“The accident occurred near Icchapur railway station around 11.09am when the Sealdah-bound Kalyani Simanta local was speeding along and the trio were walking on the tracks,” said Utpal Kumar Naskar, the superintendent of railway police, Sealdah. “The three had headphones plugged into their ears,” he said.

The victims have been identified as Abhijit Das, 20, Biplob Sarkar, 22, and Ashish Shaw, 22.

Abhijit, a Class XII student of Shantinagar High School, was the youngest among five siblings, said police. He was from Shantinagar in Titagarh.

Biplob, also from the same locality, was a first-year student of PN Das College, Palta.

Ashish of Ichhapur was a trader of paints.

He was walking down the tracks towards railway gate number 20.

Abhijit and Biplob were a few metres ahead of him.

“Some of the residents of a slum adjacent to the railway tracks had seen the train approaching. They tried to alert the trio but they didn’t hear or notice anything because of the earphones,” said a GRP official.

The police said Abhijit was the first to be knocked down, followed by Biplob and Ashish. They were killed instantly.

The three were taken to a hospital where they were declared dead on arrival.

“A few others who were walking down the tracks had moved away hearing the driver honk, but these three did not,” said the owner of a shop near the platform.

“All of us screamed but they couldn’t hear. There was some fog as well,” he said.

In 2005, a train had mowed down Tollywood make-up artist Prabir De while he was walking on the tracks and speaking on his mobile phone.

On Wednesday morning, the three youths suffered the same fate despite people trying to alert them.