The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Train comes with coffins

Malda, Dec. 28: The Farakka Express today brought back the bodies of 11 workers, who were killed on Saturday in south Delhi after the earth caved in at a construction site.

It was 8 am when the train entered platform number one of Malda station. Bereaved family members, minister Sailen Sarkar and CPM supporters were present to receive the coffins that brought the bodies.

Citu leaders later escorted the bodies to the respective villages. Of the 11 deceased, 10 were from Ratua, 60 km from Malda town, while one was from Manikchak.

Sarkar, accompanied by CPM district secretary Jiban Moitra, Citu district president Indrajit Mitra and secretary of the organisation Pranab Das, had arrived at the station long before the arrival of the train.

As one by one the coffins were lowered on the platform from the goods compartment of the train, the still air was shattered by the anguished cries of relatives.

Malda additional superintendent of police Debasish Baral took charge of the coffins from sub-inspector of Behala police station Goutam Chatterjee, who had been sent to Delhi by the state government to bring back the bodies.

By 9 am, four trucks ' escorted by a police pilot car ' left for the houses of the victims at Ratua and Manikchak.

Sarkar gave Rs 13,500 to each of the bereaved families, from the Rs 1.5 lakh sent by the construction company that had hired the labourers, for cremation.

The minister said talks were on with the state and Delhi governments to arrange for more compensation for the families. He said CPM politburo member Brinda Karat was in touch with Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit.

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